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Life's Rich Pageant

Paul Pierce Traps Kevin Garnett In Grim Men’s Livestream

1:50 PM EDT on June 8, 2023

Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett
Screenshot: Showtime

As has been previously documented, the grim men's evening that cost Celtics legend Paul Pierce his ESPN gig was no fluke. This is not a man who just occasionally stumbles into a brutal night of masculine reverie by chance, but one who is deeply committed to the lifestyle. Pierce does not find his way into a grim men's evening; he inflicts one upon whatever place he happens to be.

This dynamic was on display again Wednesday night, when Pierce spent over two and a half hours on an NBA Finals livestream with his old teammate, Kevin Garnett. Pierce and Garnett have both recently hopped on the sports gambling gravy train, and so in exchange for what I am assuming is a great deal of money, they are now "creating content" for a sports gambling company. This job requires them to do things like sit in a Las Vegas sportsbook and watch Game 3 of the Finals while having their reactions livestreamed on the internet, so that other people can sit at home and watch them watch the game. It's like the Manningcast, except without the actual game broadcast rights, and therefore a huge waste of time.

But maybe not a total waste of time. Wednesday's livestream, which ran for two hours and 39 minutes, did at least provide us with the most complete picture yet of what it's like to hang out with Paul Pierce for an extended period of time. Have you ever found yourself trapped on a couch with a deliriously drunk friend who just keeps yammering in your ear while you are trying to watch sports? I'm talking about one of those nights where you can't take your eyes off the TV, not because the game is so captivating but because it's the only way to avoid engaging with the person next to you, who won't stop leaning over and slurring things like "You gotta go up strong." That's what watching sports with Paul Pierce is like, except that he will also keep asking you if he should call some escorts.

For the first 20 minutes or so of the livestream, Pierce was doing normal drunk-guy stuff. Not yet through the first of what would become many margaritas, he was mostly contributing to the broadcast by leaning into Garnett and mumbling things like, "Jimmy's a Hall of Famer, Cowl is a Hall ma Famer—Cowl Kowry—Kyle Lowry ... Hall of Famer," which left KG making a lot of faces like this one:

Kevin Garnett looking confused.
Screenshot: Showtime

Things started to go off the rails just a few minutes later. Up until this point, eagle-eyed observers of the livestream would have noticed that a woman was sitting partially out of frame to Pierce's right. Eventually, Pierce introduced her to Garnett as Camille, and then told everyone that they met through "a website where you can hire girlfriends for the day."

As the game entered the second quarter, the tenor of the livestream shifted. For a solid minute, Garnett struggled to share his analysis of the game over the sounds of Pierce demanding that the cameras zoom in on him so he could show everyone his jewelry. Pierce briefly took a break from this to worry about a bet he placed on Miami, before getting his phone out of his pocket and saying, "Let's call some girls up, y'all. Let's call some work." At this point the stream abruptly went offline for a few minutes.

When the stream eventually came back online, Garnett continued watching the game while Pierce, with his mic turned down, conducted a sullen phone call.

Paul pierce talks on the phone
Screenshot: Showtime

By the third quarter, Pierce's drunkenness had shifted from the chatty variety to the near-catatonic. He produced a cigar from somewhere, chewed on it for a bit while staring into space, and then asked if he could light it inside. This kicked off the most lively portion of the livestream, which ended with Pierce getting nailed in the face by a lighter thrown by someone from off-camera.

I have to say, after watching almost this entire livestream: Kevin Garnett is a saint. It was painfully obvious that Pierce was driving him crazy throughout the evening, but he powered through, trying to offer what analysis he could on the game and repeatedly attempting to redirect Pierce's attention onto the TVs in front of him. I don't know if he did it on purpose or not, but he also delivered the night's best moment of comedic timing.

As the game was wrapping up, Pierce started livestreaming from his own phone, mumbling to his followers about which casino he was going to check out after the game. While Pierce was doing this, Garnett suddenly turned to him and asked, "What's your adjustments for Game 4, if you're Miami?" Pierce responded like a guy trying to pass a sobriety test. I hope he had fun at the Bellagio.

h/t Evan

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