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Mark Cuban reveals how Hawks killed Mavs’ blockbuster trade for Celtics star Paul Pierce

Mark Cuban Mavericks Mavs Paul Pierce

Turns out, Paul Pierce was almost a member of the Dallas Mavericks.

During an appearance on “Heavy Live with Scoop B Show” Mavericks owner Mark Cuban revealed that his team almost had a three-team deal in place to acquire the Boston Celtics star in 2013, only for the third team, the Atlanta Hawks, to back out of the deal. According to Cuban the Hawks reneged on the trade once they learned that the Celtics, their Eastern Conference foe, were involved.

“We were (close to trading for Pierce) and Atlanta killed it,” Cuban said. “We had a three-way deal done with the Mavs, Celtics, and Atlanta and when Atlanta saw the other team, because you really don’t tell the other team (who) the third team (is), you just say we’re moving a player, when we got to the trade call, they killed it.”

Dallas was looking to build one more contender around Dirk Nowitzki at the end of his prime, two years after winning the title in 2011. At the time, Pierce was 35 years old, but still had a few good years of hoops left.

Cuban did not say who or what else was involved in the foiled trade.

Instead of a Mavs stint, after one final season in Boston, Pierce was traded to the Brooklyn Nets in the summer of 2013, along with Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry and D.J. White in exchange for five players (to match salaries), plus three first round picks and a 2017 pick swap. It famously did not work out for the Nets, while the Celtics now have Jayson Tatum.