Paul Pierce absolutely took over down the stretch for the Nets, scoring nine points over four consecutive possessions in the game’s final three minutes to help deliver a 94-87 road victory over the Raptors in Game 1 of a first-round playoff series.
After sinking the fourth shot, a mid-range jumper over Patrick Patterson that gave Brooklyn a nine-point lead with less than one minute to play, Pierce stared down the Air Canada Centre crowd and thumped his chest on the way to the huddle.
“That’s why they got me here,” a mic’d up Paul could be heard saying. “That’s why I’m in here. That’s what I do. Best in the business. That’s what I do.”
The 36-year-old Pierce was acquired along with Kevin Garnett by the Nets in a 2013 blockbuster trade with the Celtics. “The Truth” has played in 137 playoff games over his career and was a member of the 2008 title-winning Celtics.
On his way off the court, Pierce had a little bit more fun, throwing his headband into the crowd. The celebratory gesture was initially rejected, as Raptors fans threw the headband back to him, but he stuck with it.
“There were just too many cameras on them, they wanted to have pride,” Pierce said during his post-game comments. “The third time was the charm.”