The Los Angeles Clippers want to re-unite Doc Rivers and Paul Pierce, and the Clippers are looking to acquire Pierce in a sign-and-trade with the Brooklyn Nets, according to ESPN's Ramona Shelburne and Ohm Youngmisuk.
ESPN's Marc Stein first reported earlier in the week that the Clippers felt they had a good chance to steal Pierce away from Brooklyn. Los Angeles wants to upgrade the small-forward position and Pierce is a good fit considering his history with Rivers.
Why this makes sense
The Clippers could simply offer Pierce the $5.305 mid-level exception to try and sign him outright, but a sign-and-trade would make sense on multiple fronts. Pierce could make more money in a sign-and-trade because the Nets hold his Bird rights, and while he won't come close to making the $15 million he made last year, he could still get more than the mid-level.
A sign-and-trade also allows the Nets to get something in return for Pierce, rather than just losing him for nothing after one season. The Clippers are reportedly looking to include some combination of Matt Barnes, Jared Dudley and Reggie Bullock.
Why this doesn't make sense
The move really makes all the sense in the world for the Clippers, but perhaps not as much for Brooklyn. First of all, the Nets would like to re-sign Pierce, so they probably aren't in any rush to help facilitate a move to Los Angeles.
This is especially the case if the Nets don't like what the Clippers have to offer, and they don't, according to ESPN's Chris Broussard. Brooklyn could try and hold out for a better return, or they could just force Pierce to take the mid-level if he truly wants to leave.
While the Nets may be resisting initial sign-and-trade efforts made by the Clippers, Pierce going to Los Angeles just seems too perfect. So ultimately, I feel like there's about a 70 percent chance Brooklyn relents and works something out.