NBA Legend Paul Pierce Champions NBA's 65-Game Rule, Citing Michael Jordan's Ironclad Durability

Photo: Instagram/Paul Pierce

In a recent appearance on The Ticket & Truth podcast, former Boston Celtics star Paul Pierce voiced his endorsement for the NBA's contentious 65-game rule, drawing parallels to the legendary Chicago Bulls icon, Michael Jordan, and expressing his admiration for Jordan's unparalleled durability throughout his illustrious career.

Known for his six undefeated appearances in the Finals, prolific scoring, and a reputation as one of the greatest in-game dunkers, Michael Jordan's enduring presence on the court captured the admiration of fans and fellow players alike. However, for Paul Pierce, it was Jordan's remarkable consistency in the number of games played each season that made a lasting impression.

During the podcast, Pierce delved into the statistics of Jordan's career, emphasizing that the basketball legend participated in at least 78 games in all of his 15 seasons that were injury-free. Jordan's extraordinary commitment to the game was evident, with only a foot injury sidelining him in the 1985-86 season after 18 games and a knee surgery limiting him to 60 games in the 2001-02 season.

Photo: Instagram/Paul Pierce

"I like the 65-game rule," Pierce expressed during the podcast. "This is my GOAT. He's played 99 percent of the games," he added, highlighting Jordan's near-perfect attendance throughout his career. The 65-game rule mandates players to partake in a minimum of 65 games to qualify for postseason awards, a regulation Pierce sees as promoting player responsibility and commitment to the sport.

While Pierce stands firmly behind the rule, it has faced criticism from current NBA players, notably LeBron James and Tyrese Haliburton. LeBron James, a vocal opponent, has argued against the necessity of such stringent regulations, while Haliburton, a guard for the Indiana Pacers, labeled the rule as "stupid" but acknowledged it as a necessary part of their professional responsibilities.

In contrast to the dissenting voices, Pierce sees the 65-game rule as a means to ensure player accountability and align with owners' preferences. The rule has sparked debates within the basketball community, particularly as players like Joel Embiid have faced injuries, leading to discussions about the impact of the rule on player health.

As the league grapples with differing opinions on the 65-game rule, Paul Pierce's support, rooted in Michael Jordan's enduring legacy, adds another layer to the ongoing discourse surrounding the NBA's approach to regular-season participation and postseason award eligibility. (SOURCE: Sports Illustrated)

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