TORONTO - Don't go searching in the supermarket aisles or in the frozen food section at the local wholesale warehouse for ingredients to make "clutch" soup.
Paul Pierce knows there's no exact recipe, no specific blue print in becoming someone who's counted on heavily in crunch time. There's only one way to acquire that ability to get it done with the game on the line.
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"I think it's in the DNA," Pierce said Tuesday. "Everybody doesn't have it. Everybody's not born with it. Can't buy it at Costco or Walgreen's. It's in the DNA."
So precisely how has Pierce sustained it during his career? He basically paraphrased the catch lines from that old Ragu commercial.
"Like I said, it's in the DNA," he said. "It's in there. There's nothing I can do to let it go. I can't lose it, I can't break it. I mean, it's in there. It's in there."
Much has been made over the previous two days about the officiating in Game 1.
Although there wasn't much of a disparity in the number of free throws -- Brooklyn took 27, Toronto 25 -- or the total number of fouls whistled (the Nets were called for four fewer), there seems to be a perception that the officials were favoring the Nets more in the series opener. Kevin Garnett just shrugged it off.
"In the playoffs, you're not going to get calls," he said. "If you do, you're fortunate."
"Playing on the road is very difficult. We know that. Some of us do. And that's just expected to come with the series. Things are not going to go the way you want them and you have to just continue to be aggressive. But that's the difference between experience and no experience." Celebs dig scene
Move over, Drake. Toronto mayor Rob Ford also was expected to make an appearance at the game Tuesday night, decked in his Raptors gear attending his first of the season. Ford wasn't in a courtside seat next to Toronto's bench like Drake, the team's "Global Ambassador," but he's just the latest notable person looking to make his presence known at a Raptors game.
"It's great for our organization to get the hype," Raptors coach Dwane Casey said, "but I don't get caught up in all that."