Chris Broussard, in a tweet and an interview on ESPN, threw a lot of cold water on his colleagues' reporting on the possibility of the Nets and Clippers engaging any time soon and noted that the Nets "want to keep Paul Pierce and they believe that they still have a shot at keeping him," adding that's their priority with Pierce.
ESPN's Ramona Shelburne in L.A. and Ohm Youngmisuk in New York reported overnight that the Clippers and Nets have had discussions about a sign-and-trade and that Doc Rivers has spoken multiple times to Pierce about the possibility of two reuniting in L.A.
In a discussion of the trade with P.J. Carlesimo Thursday morning, here's what Broussard said...
For the Clippers, until LeBron and Melo are off the table, they have to keep their options open. They really can't go out and get Pierce definitively until those guys are gone. Doubt they go to the Clippers, either one of them.
Now, Pierce. They want to talk sign-and-trade with the Nets. But the Nets are looking at who they're talking about offering --Jared Dudley, Matt Barnes. Matt Barnes would be the best, Matt Barnes or Reggie Bullock.
The Nets don't have any interest in those guys. If you want to talk about Jamal Crawford, then maybe you can get the Nets to listen. They're not going to give Paul Pierce away. They want to keep Paul Pierce and they believe that they still have a shot at keeping him. Look, he's from LA, obviously a great relationship with Doc Rivers. The history. That would probably be Paul Pierce's preference but it's not like he's against Brooklyn. You know, he had a good season last year. They still have a promising team.
So the Nets No. 1 priority is to keep Pierce and remember, they can pay him a lot more than the Clippers can. The Clippers can only pay about $5 million.
P.J. Carlesimo agreed that the Nets are not going to accept the players mentioned, but "if you put a J.J. Redick or a Jamal Crawford in there with Matt Barnes, then you got players. Brooklyn wants to win now! If I'm Brooklyn, I think Billy King and Lionel Hollins are going to go 'wait a minute. Lets' see Paul Pierce for a year or half a year with Brook Lopez.' Bring a healthy Brook Lopez back and Brooklyn's a pretty good team."
Among the beat writers, Alex Raskin of the Wall Street Journal reported that things were far less along than suggested.
- Clippers Interested In Paul Pierce (Video) - Chris Broussard & P.J. Carlesimo - ESPN
- Trading Paul Pierce Would Send Nets Back To The Future - Steve Lichtenstein - WFAN