Paul Pierce became the third player in Celtics history to reach 20,000 points, eclipsing the milestone with a free throw with 13.3 second left in overtime against the Milwaukee Bucks. The 23rd point of the night for Pierce gave him 20,000 in his career, allowing him to join John Havlicek (26,395) and Larry Bird (21,791) as the only players in franchise history to reach the milestone.
After making the free throw, Pierce thrust his arms up in response to a standing ovation from the crowd at TD Garden. Following the game, when asked on Comcast New England what the accomplishment, Pierce initially could not respond while overcome by emotion.
"I've just been through so many ups and downs. To reach a certain plateau, being on one team, it's just a special place. It's meant so much. I'm thankful to the fans who have stuck behind me the last 13 years, to see me accomplish such a feat, and I'm glad to do it in a Celtics uniform," Pierce said in the TV interview. "Five years ago, I wouldn't have thought that I'd still be in a Celtic jersey. I'm happy I'm still here and able to challenge certain records."
Pierce added on five more free throws to finish with 28 points on the night in the Celtics' 105-102 win. He was 11-for-11 from the foul line, and 8-for-17 from the floor in the game.
Pierce, 33, was drafted in the first round (No. 10 overall) by the Celtics out of Kansas in 1998.
For more Celtics coverage, visit weei.com/celtics.
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