Disappointed Pierce to miss Friday's game vs. 76ers

Paul Pierce will not play Friday night against the Philadelphia 76ers, though team spokesman Jeff Twiss said that this did not mean the Celtics captain was shutting down for the rest of the season.

Team officials consider Pierce's status day-to-day. He could return to action as early as Sunday against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Pierce traveled with the team to Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon but did not attend Friday morning's team shootaround.

"I'm the classic case of a great player on a bad team, and it stinks."
-- Paul Pierce

Pierce has mentioned the possibility of shutting down for the rest of the season due to a number of injuries, including a sore swollen and sore left elbow as well as his ongoing recovery from a stress reaction in his left foot.

In fact, the star guard has had a rough season with the Celtics in general, and he wasn't afraid to voice his concerns in a recent interview.

"It's definitely another year gone by for me," Pierce told the Boston Herald in a story published Friday. "It's another year we don't get into the postseason. It's another year I don't get recognized for the things I do. I'm the classic case of a great player on a bad team, and it stinks."

Pierce, a five-time All-Star, has suffered through injuries and an 18-game losing streak by Boston this season. Despite those difficulties, Pierce has managed to average 25 points and 5.9 rebounds per game.

"I'm waiting to see what happens this summer," he told the paper. "We have to see who we keep and who has enough potential trade value to make a difference.

"I'm not talking about winning a few more games. I'm talking about getting into the playoffs, going deep into the playoffs. I don't want to be a team that just sneaks in. I want to be on a team that everyone says before the season, 'This is a team that's going somewhere,' like Detroit.

"Either we go for it, or we don't."

Boston is in the mix in the Kevin Durant/Greg Oden sweepstakes if the two college basketball stars decide to enter this June's NBA draft. Through Thursday's games, Memphis holds the league's worst record and Boston is four games "behind" the Grizzlies.