And despite not getting into Toronto until 4 a.m. Saturday following Friday night's thrilling double-overtime victory over the Miami Heat, the Nets had overcome a sluggish start and a 13-point deficit and put themselves in excellent position to secure a sixth straight win.
But things spiraled out of control from there.
Paul Pierce blamed Brooklyn's loss in Toronto on fatigue.
And by the time Pierce returned to the game 7 minutes, 13 seconds later, the Nets trailed 72-64.
An 18-point swing.
And just like that, the Nets are no longer undefeated in 2014 or when coach Jason Kidd doesn't wear a tie.
In their 96-80 loss to the Raptors, it seemed very apparent: The Nets simply ran out of gas.
"Fatigue really set in," Pierce said. "We didn't have a lot of depth. ... A lot of things were against us."
An 18-0 Raptors run and a more-than-nine-minute Nets' field goal drought (0-for-13) bridging the end of the third and the start of the fourth proved to be the difference.
On my Twitter feed, anyway, fans were, for the most part, extremely upset with Kidd's substitution patterns.
Why didn't Kidd bring Pierce or Joe Johnson back in the game sooner? Why did he take Pierce, who was shooting well at the time, out in the first place? Didn't Kidd realize the Nets don't play again until Thursday in London? What was he thinking?
Their frustration was understandable.
And yet, Pierce, 36, had logged a season-high-tying 44 minutes Friday night. Johnson, 32, had logged a season-high 46 minutes. Kevin Garnett, 37, who had logged a season-high 36 minutes, was given a rest day. And Shaun Livingston, 28, had logged a career-high 51 minutes.