Paul Pierce didn’t come to Brooklyn to score just 10 points in the biggest game of the season.
But he did come to win—and that’s what he ultimately did in Game 7 against the Toronto Raptors, despite his stat sheet deficiencies.
This was not the first game of the series that Pierce essentially won. A pair of clutch jumpers down the stretch in the opening contest gave Brooklyn a 1-0 series lead.
Kyle Lowry somehow slipped through the Nets’ perimeter defense with about two seconds left as BKN clung to a one-point lead. Lowry, who had tormented the Nets all series, had a clean look at a floater that would've won the game.
But Pierce had other plans.
The Truth sent Lowry’s shot back, sent Toronto packing and sent the Nets to a heavyweight matchup against the Miami Heat in the second round.
After the game, the Truth noted Brooklyn's emphasis on the defensive end, per ESPN:
We said we were going to win this with our defense. Lowry, we knew he was going to try to get to the hole. It was a scramble for the ball, I saw him go up. I went up for the block. Clean block at the end. Great playoff series. These guys, they're going to be tough to beat in the near future.
But Brooklyn doesn't have to worry about Toronto anymore—not now, at least. Because at the moment, the only thing on the Nets' mind is the reigning champs.