Paul Pierce was in classic Truth mode last night. He scored 20 of his 26 points in the second half, including seven in the overtime period. He added five rebounds and four assists for good measure after intermission as well, while playfully jawing with Utah fans courtside for much of the evening.
The Truth lives for these kind of games, whether they are in New York City or Salt Lake City. Last night was yet another example that made Celtics fans appreciate the fact that Pierce still wears a green jersey.
Perhaps the most impressive feat of the night though for 15-year veteran was besting a tough defender named DeMarre Carroll down the stretch. The 4th-year small forward brought plenty of energy and intensity on the defensive end against Pierce over the closing minutes and Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe reported after the game Pierce and Carroll had gone back and forth in pickup games over the summer, adding an extra edge to last night’s battle.
That intensity showed as Carroll literally tried to do everything in the book to stop Boston’s captain, including forcibly yanking on Pierce’s shorts on a pick-and-roll in the final two minutes of overtime.
Naturally, Pierce did not let the potential wardrobe malfunction slow him, as he calmly hit the midrange jumper to put the Celtics up five with 1:12 remaining in OT.
Incredibly, Pierce has a history of doing this sort of thing (hitting jumpers while getting your pants pulled down that is).
Back in 2005, when Metta World Peace was better known as Ron Artest, the small forward blatantly pulled down Pierce’s shorts in the lane on the beginning of a Celtics possession. Rather than panicking, Pierce responded by drilling a jumper in Artest’s face.
Al Jefferson summed up the whole situation aptly last night, after the game.
— A. Sherrod Blakely (@SherrodbCSN) February 26, 2013