Report: Wizards to Sign Paul Pierce to Two-Year Contract

The Washington Wizards have reportedly made a sizeable free-agent splash, committing to sign veteran forward Paul Pierce to a two-year, $11 million contract, according to ESPN.

Having failed to retain forward Trevor Ariza, who will reportedly sign a four-year, $32 million contract with the Houston Rockets, Washington moved fast to acquire a battle-tested veteran. Pierce, 36, spent last season with the Brooklyn Nets after 15 seasons with the Boston Celtics. The 10-time All-Star averaged 13.5 points in 28.0 minutes per game for the Nets, both career-lows.

ESPN reports that the contract has a player option that would allow Pierce to return to free agency next summer if he chooses. As the article notes, the short-term nature of the deal will provide the Wizards with an opportunity to pursue D.C. native and reigning MVP Kevin Durant when he becomes available in 2016.

Washington re-signed center Marcin Gortat to a five-year contract last week. With John Wall, Bradley Beal and Pierce (not to mention LeBron James leaving the Miami Heat to return to the Cleveland Cavaliers), the Wizards could be favorites to win the Southeast Division.

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