VA New England

Defining Moments: Pierce has second half for the ages vs. Nets

On Dec. 1, 2001, Paul Pierce scored 46 of his 48 points in the second half and OT in New Jersey.

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Twenty-two years ago, Paul Pierce had one of his many defining moments as a Boston Celtics great.

It was Dec. 1, 2001, in East Rutherford, N.J. Pierce simply couldn't find his groove in the first half vs. the Nets, scoring only two points while shooting a miserable 1-for-16 from the floor.

Whatever he did at the half to get himself into the game, it worked.

Pierce caught fire in the second half and helped the Celtics rally from a 17-point deficit to force overtime. He hit 12 of his 18 shots including all five of his 3-pointers and made 17 of his 18 free throws.

The Hall of Famer finished with 48 points, 46 of them coming during the second half and OT. He scored 13 of Boston's 15 overtime points to lead the way in the 105-98 victory.

"My role on this team is I'm one of the go-to guys," he said after the game, via ESPN. "I have to stay aggressive. This team needs me to stay aggressive, mix it up, drive to the basket.

"If they see me out there losing confidence, they lose confidence. They need to see me playing basketball, the way Paul Pierce plays basketball."

You can relive Pierce's historic performance in the video player above, courtesy of VA New England.

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