Paul Pierce, that grizzled yeoman, told his coach he wanted to guard LeBron James in a critical Game 4 after the Nets preserved the series against the Heat over the weekend. Pierce got his wish: he was given King James duties on Monday.
It turns out that this isn't new for Pierce, this "watching LeBron go ballistic in the playoffs" thing. In fact, of all of LeBron's most prolific nights in the postseason, The Truth has, ahem, witnessed the most close-up. Take a look.
Note that all three of those LeBron explosions against Pierce came in critical games. LeBron's teams faced elimination in the two prior to Monday's 49er. The King's big performance Monday prevented the Nets from evening the series.
To be fair, Pierce has also held LeBron under 20 points three times in the playoffs. The Celtics won all of those games.