Pierce could only shake his head as he watched himself and James battle -- often in dramatic slow-motion -- back-and-forth throughout the series.
"Man, LeBron's a beast," Pierce sighed at the time.
Pierce should expect more of the same this time around and he's well aware of the challenge that awaits.
"We know this is going to be a tough series -- a really, really tough series," said Pierce. "You've got LeBron James -- the best player in the NBA right now. He is about to receive another MVP, a two-time MVP. It's a huge mountain we're going to have to climb, but I think this team is ready to face the test. We are playing as well as we have been playing all season long, and we are ready."
But is James ready?
Click HERE to read the full story.
Play Podcast The Boston Globe's Bob Ryan discusses the rivalry between Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, the performances of Bill Belichick and Tom Brady and Boston's best team in history.
Play Podcast The ESPN Boston High School football crew discusses Week 8 of the Massachusetts HS football season.