BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics and forward Paul Pierce have reached an agreement on a new contract.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the Boston Herald reported last week the two sides agreed to a deal for four years, with options for the club and Pierce after the third year.
"I am very excited to be back in Boston," said Pierce. "I have always said that I would love to retire as a Celtic and re-signing here will allow me to do that. I would like to thank Danny (Ainge), Doc (Rivers), the ownership group and the rest of the organization. I'm thrilled that they kept the core intact and look forward to getting back on the parquet with my teammates so we can bring Banner 18 home to Boston."
Pierce opted out of his contract for next season and became an unrestricted free agent when the NBA free agency period started on July 1. Pierce was due to make $21.5 million in the final year of his previous contract, and the Herald reports that he will make less than that in 2010-11 to give the Celtics a better financial position.
"Paul has been a cornerstone of our franchise for the last decade and we could not be more pleased that he is returning to the team," said president of basketball operations Danny Ainge.
Pierce, who will be 33 before next season begins, averaged 18.3 points and 4.4 rebounds over 71 games during the 2009-10 campaign. He upped that to 18.8 ppg and 6.0 rpg during the playoffs, helping Boston reach the NBA Finals for the second time in three years.
Boston selected the Kansas product with the 10th overall pick in the 1998 NBA Draft. He owns career averages of 22.5 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.8 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game.