Paul Pierce looked around the visitors’ locker room Tuesday in Charlotte and wondered where the Celtics had gone.

The bunch in there wasn’t them, he surmised. It couldn’t be. Sure, he’d sat out his first game of the season to rest, but in his absence the Celtics then lost to the NBA’s worst team by 26 points. The Celtics wouldn’t do such a thing.

“Was I in somebody else’s locker room?” Pierce said he wondered to himself.

The mood on the team’s charter flight home was a cocktail of disappointment and anger, and Pierce said he knew that no matter what team stood in their way Wednesday night, the Celtics were going to destroy them, even if he didn’t play.

Pity the Toronto Raptors, who wandered helplessly into the line of fire at TD Garden.