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Paul Pierce lays on the court, Paul Pierce exiting in a wheelchair
Left: Photo by Matthew West/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images Right: YouTube: ESPN

Paul Pierce contests a Kobe Bryant shot. Bryant hits it, and Pierce crumbles to the ground like a ton of bricks in agonizing pain, bracing his right knee. The replay shows that he maybe, potentially, if you say so, awkwardly landed on Boston Celtics teammate Kendrick Perkins’ foot.

Not one, not two, but three Celtics personnel carry him off the court. He takes a wheelchair to the locker room. Less than two full minutes of game time later, Pierce cheerfully returns to a hero’s welcome. He goes back in and looks like he’s at 100 percent. It’s an NBA playoffs miracle.

It just doesn’t add up. Something smells funky, and I think it’s Paul Pierce’s shorts.

Paul Pierce’s Wheelchair Game

PAul Pierce lays on the floor after soiling himself in Game 1 of the 2008 NBA Finals
Photo by Matthew West/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

Let’s set the scene: It was Game 1 of the 2008 NBA Finals, the Boston Celtics’ first trip since 1987. On the opposing side was their historical rival, the Los Angeles Lakers. It’s the first season of the Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen big three. The TD Garden was buzzing. Kobe’s shot gave the Lakers a 62-58 advantage about five minutes into the third quarter.

A great NBA conspiracy theory ensued.

The sheer drama of the whole thing had me think we just witnessed a career-altering injury that shattered Boston’s title hopes. Turns out, the Truth was really gunning for the Oscar.

With these types of injuries, guys traditionally fight through the pain to hobble off the court themselves. A wheelchair is never used 99.999999 percent of the time in this context. Somehow, Pierce skipped back onto the court good to go not five minutes later?

What a convenient way to hide one’s backside. Someone, who, hypothetically, had a little accident.

The dots have been connected; the evidence examined.

Paul Pierce pooped his pants in an NBA Finals game.

Following a 22-point performance and a 98-88 victory, Pierce elaborated on the devastating leg injury:

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“Well, when I first fell to the ground, I heard a pop in my knee, and all I felt was pain when I grabbed it,” [he said]. “And at that point, I thought it was just — I thought I tore something. That’s the way I felt at the time. Usually when I go down, I’m getting right back up, but it was an instance where I turned my knee and it popped, heard it pop, and I was just in pain where I just couldn’t move.”

Poopgate: Paul Pierce’s Confession

The people demanded answers, and on the incident’s 11th anniversary, they got them. On NBA Countdown’s coverage of Game 3 of the 2019 NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Toronto Raptors, ESPN’s Michelle Beadle brought up the special day. Pierce, unprompted, dove right into a confession. Co-analysts Jalen Rose and Chauncey Billups braced themselves.

“I have a confession to make: I just had to go to the bathroom.”

Did he just admit to pooping himself on national television on national television?

Pierce continued: “Something went down.”

Conspiracy theorists rejoiced. Poop fans everywhere ate fiber to celebrate this revealing Wednesday night. The wheelchair game mystery was solved.

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If you happened to be anywhere in New England on that fateful night you would have heard a loud collective yell of “I knew it!” reaching from the tip of Maine to the shores of Rhode Island.

The 10th overall pick in the 1998 NBA Draft later clarified his statement in a tweet:

“Sorry to bust y?all haters bubble but the only [poop emoji]Ing I did June 5 2008 was on the Lakers.”

Nice try, Paul. You’ll need better toilet paper than a championship and Finals MVP to clean up this one.

And honestly, at this point, the cat’s out of the bag. Schrödinger’s crap is now fully something Pierce can’t cover up anymore. From this moment on, the more he tries to swivel the narrative back to “it was nothing and not a bathroom issue” the more it absolutely was exactly that. Someone help Pierce google “the Streisand Effect.”

Pierce Later Switched Up His Story

Paul Pierce returns to Game 1 of the 2008 NBA Finals after exiting in a wheelchair
Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Pierce went on Michelle Beadle’s podcast in 2021 and seemed to give a different version of the story, saying it wouldn’t make sense to use a wheelchair had he just went No. 2 in his pants.

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“If you poop your pants, does it make sense to sit down and mush it in a wheelchair?” Pierce said. “I would walk back there and go straight to the bathroom. Why would I need a wheelchair if I pooped my pants? You don’t sit down on your poop, right? It doesn’t make sense.”

If I’m a lawyer (I am not) and I were to take this case to a court of law (I could, but I won’t) Paul Pierce is proving to be the one person who is continually sinking his own case, and would make me want to question him for hours. You know who thinks about whether or not you’d want to sit in a wheelchair after soiling your shorts? The person who once did it, or at the very least, someone who is trying to explain away that they once did it.

Paul Pierce is good at a lot of things, basketball being one of them, but when your nickname is “The Truth” it’s hard to keep lying like this to everyone.

Just saying, Paul. It’s time to come clean.

MORE: Paul Pierce and His Ex-Wife Have 3 Kids Together

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Joe Grobeck About the author:
Joe is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and lives in Austin, Texas. He believes Ndaumkong Suh should've won the 2009 Heisman and is an avid basketball fan.
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