Paul Pierce wants to know what happened to ESPN’s morals (Credit: The Truth Lounge)

Paul Pierce has some things to get off his chest.

In his aptly named The Truth Lounge with Paul Pierce podcast, the former Boston Celtics star wanted to address everything about getting fired on his day off. He took a swig of “truth serum” and discussed how it all went down.

If you can recall, Pierce, who was a studio analyst for The Jump and NBA Countdown at the time, claims that he was playing poker at his friend’s birthday party. He recalls that there were girls present who were dancing, and a lot of alcohol was consumed.

Even as a wave of contentment washed over him, savoring his retirement and the thrill of poker night with his buddies, Pierce elected to pull his phone out. And well, the rest is history.

Video from the party, which showed Pierce drinking and smoking a blunt, along with several women in bikinis twerking or massaging him, was posted on his Instagram Live account. The fallout from that video led to the Boston Celtics legend losing his ESPN gig a few days later.

“I was caught in the moment; what you want me to do?” asked Pierce.

Not assuming that anyone had seen the video, he was surprised by a flurry of calls on his phone the following day. One call from someone claiming to be with ESPN investigating the incident led to his termination a day later. The video violated Disney’s morality clause. Though silent at the time, Pierce admits he was already planning to leave ESPN by year’s end, weary of the corporate facade.

“I was tired of being held back on my opinions,” he added. “And so, it was probably the right timing of it all anyway. I was disappointed on the way it went down. You know, I didn’t want it to go that…I didn’t do nothing illegal, and that’s the story. I got fired for literally having a good time.”

Previously, discussions like the one with Lance Armstrong showed Pierce maintaining a respectful tone towards his former employer and avoiding broader criticism of similar networks. And while he might’ve disagreed with the decision, he accepted his fate and the reality of his situation.

However, his recent comments on the debut episode of his new podcast mark a shift, as he now directs more pointed remarks at both ESPN and other networks.

“And now we watch these shows. You know you got employees for ESPN and FOX who got their alternate shows,” Pierce said, likely making reference to Stephen A. Smith and Shannon Sharpe. “Now tell me where the morals in all of that when they talking about women and strippers and drinking alcohol on the set. And doing all this other stuff. Where the morals at now? Why it change now? You know, I don’t get it. It was morals two years ago, but there ain’t no morals no more? What’s the deal with that?”

“So, I don’t get how people gonna define what they say as morals and what’s good and what’s not. You know, I’m in my free time; I can do what I want in my free time. If I’m not out here doing something illegal, doing something that’s against the law, I don’t see what’s the problem with what I do in my free time.”

Following his pointed remarks, Pierce hinted at the existence of additional insights related to ESPN that he might choose to share in the future.

[The Truth Lounge, The Big Lead]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.