FIRST ROUND: RAPTORS - NETS GAME 1
Final: Raptors 87, Nets 94
Paul Pierce and the veteran-laden Brooklyn Nets took over down the stretch to gain the upper hand in their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series with the Toronto Raptors, coming through with a 94-87 Game 1 victory at a raucous Air Canada Centre.
Pierce scored nine of his 15 points in the final three minutes, part of a 19-11 game-ending run that put away the upstart Raptors in their first playoff game since 2008. Joe Johnson and Deron Williams contributed 24 apiece to help Brooklyn draw first blood in a contentious series.
Is there any true reason for all other teams in the league to be afraid of the Nets?
"This may be the one where a true answer exists. Based on what the Nets have shown ever since Jason Kidd stopped wearing ties, they are that team that can — again can, not will - behave like the UConn men and take out higher seed after higher seed en route to a seven-game series version of survival and advancement. When asked if the Nets are the Heat’s biggest threat after being the only team to beat Miami four times this season, LeBron laughed it off. His “get outta here… next question” to Craig Sager (http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/brooklyn-nets/post/_/id/17621/nets-laugh-off-lebrons-chuckle?ex_cid=espnapi_public) could have been all the ancillary ammo the Nets needed to will (excuse me, I meant “D-Will”) themselves into the conference finals.
More than talent, big names and the fact that they’ve seemed to finally found the ground under them, the Nets have one incentive that no other team left standing has: to prove that what happened to them in last year’s playoffs will not happen to them ever again. No team went out like they did. Calling it an embarrassment is an embarrassment to being embarrassed. Over the course of dealing with that and surviving the loss of Brook Lopez this season, the Nets have developed a sense of pride and purpose that matches the arrogance of the people in neighborhoods that surround the Barclays Center. Their whole mentality is Drake. Telling themselves they started from the bottom and now they are here. How long they’ll be here is unsure. But the team they face once they get out of the first round should be scared. Very, very scared.”
(Excerpt from Scoop Jackson’s article - it’s a great read!)
The Playoffs are here Nets fans. We’ve been waiting.