FORMER NBA star Paul Pierce has been axed by ESPN after having worked at the network since 2017.
Pierce, the MVP of the 2008 NBA Finals with the Boston Celtics, played for 19 years in the league.
Why was Paul Pierce fired by ESPN?
Paul Pierce was fired by ESPN after he was seen drinking and smoking while strippers danced in the background in an Instagram video.
ESPN sources told the New York Post the network was particularly concerned because Pierce himself posted the videos.
Pierce, who is married, might have been able to keep his position if he had been filmed without his knowledge, according to the newspaper.
Pierce's dismissal was first reported by Barrett Sports Media.
The NBA superstar had been a part of ESPN's NBA Countdown pregame show.
What did Pierce say about his dismissal?
Pierce has not said much, but did craft a series of cryptic tweets.
"Big Things coming soon stay tuned make sure u smile," he wrote on April 5.
He had written "good morning" on April 3, which was the day after the Instagram video was posted.
He also commented on Gonzaga's miracle shot in the Final Four, writing, "what a shot!!!! Omg Gonzaga."
However, Gonzaga was soundly defeated by Baylor in the title game on the evening of April 5.
On April 5 he wrote that "I can’t lose even when I lose I’m winning."
When did Pierce play in the NBA?
Pierce played with four different teams from 1998 to 2017, joining ESPN after his retirement.
The 6-foot-7 former small forward and shooting guard played for the Celtics for the first 15 years of his career, winning the NBA title in 2008.
Pierce averaged a personal-best 26.8 points per game with the Celtics during the 2005-06 season.
He also played for the Brooklyn Nets, Washington, and the Los Angeles Clippers.
Pierce average nearly 20 points per game during his career, and is expected to earn a spot in the Basketball Hall of Fame.
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