So you might have caught wind of it a little bit by now, but I want to put it out there for the fans and the league to know: Iím definitely trying to compete in the 3-point Shootout at NBA All-Star Weekend in Dallas this year.
Iíve got my reasons.
Some of you might remember a few years back I was in the 2002 3-point Shootout contest. If you donít, hereís a little YouTube clip to jog your memory.
I only made eight shots!
I was EMBARRASSED! The only thing that saved me from major embarrassment was that Steve Smith shot an eight, too. If he didnít shoot a eight then I would have been totally embarrassed.
The craziest part is, I never practiced for it. I thought it was just go out there, shoot and make shots. But youíve got to practice grabbing the ball off the rack and getting to the next spot. Youíre used to getting a pass. If I did it this year, I would set up the racks and actually practice for it. Because youíve got to have a strategy, I think.
So I want to try to redeem myself from that embarrassment, man. I feel like I put in a lot of time on my shooting.
Actually this was a goal of mine. I wanted to shoot over 44 percent from the 3 this year. You know thatís the Danny Ainge line that used to be the team record until Eddie House edged him out last year. I told E-House back in training camp that I was shooting for his record. I told him and had been doing a lot of 3-point shooting and just shooting in general. I told him that was one of my goals.
I know heís got a campaign going for the 3-point contest too.
But if you look at the numbers, Iím shooting 47 percent from 3. Iím having the best 3-point shooting season of my career. Hopefully I can redeem myself if they let me. I donít know how they choose the shooters. I think they just choose you based on who they think are the best 3-point shooters. But I want to get a chance to try it again after only making eight shots.
As far as the NBA All-Star Game itself, itíd be nice to go, but Iím not putting a lot of thought into it. Weíre trying to get through these games. Weíre trying to get healthy. Weíre trying to grind it out until we get the troops back.
But I will say if anybody should make All-Star this year, I think itís Rajon Rondo. Heís made major strides. But you can see it in his work ethic. Itís not something that just happens, youíve got to work at it, and he works at it. He watches film on the plane. Heís always watching games after the game. He wants to get better. †
I hope he can be a part of All-Star Weekend, and I hope I can too, especially the 3-point contest. The thing is, you enjoy the whole experience. Youíre sitting there on the court, watching the dunk contest or the 3-point contest of the rookie game, you just want to enjoy the experience. Youíre around your peers. Youíre around the best of the best.
Regardless of if you talk smack during the season or when you play against each other, but itís another thing when you get around each other. You just enjoy being around each other for that weekend and just having fun.†
As told to Globe reporter Julian Benbow.
Paul Pierce's FitClub34 by Harvard Pilgrim is a Truth Fund program providing children with the information, resources, and tools necessary to become more active and physically fit. To learn more, visit www.truthonhealth.org
Note: Paul Pierce is holding a raffle at paulpierce.net to win his personal suite at the Garden for the Celtics' Jan. 31 game vs. the Lakers. Tickets are $2 each.