By Spike Eskin

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Since we’ve spent the better part of the last 30 hours criticizing Kevin Garnett (and rightly so) for his comments about Sixers and Celtics fans, it’s only right that we give some credit to Paul Pierce.

Pierce told NESN in Boston (read the entire article):

“You’ve got a very resilient Philadelphia group who just won’t go away. I take my hat off to them. They are one of the better teams we even played in the last few years because of their fight. They’ve got great coaches and their players are mentally tough. We know they’re not going to go away.”

Pierce, who has been hounded by the Sixers’ Andre Iguodala in the series, has bounced back after going 5-20 and averaging just over 10 points in the first two games, to shoot almost 50% and average over 20 points per game in the last three.

Though Pierce is under contract for next year, with Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen’s impending free-agency, this season could be the last time the three future hall-of-famers have a shot at an NBA championship.

NESN’s Ben Wantanabe suggested we might not notice Pierce’s comments:

Nobody will pay it any attention, since Kevin Garnett’s comments about Philadelphians being “fair-weather fans” is sure to dominate any conversation concerning this Eastern Conference semifinal series.

I just wanted to assure Ben that we are a fair, kind, as well as a dedicated media and fanbase in Philadelphia.

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