Celtics topple Clippers, consider dealing Kevin Garnett
Boston, MA, United States (4E Sports) – Boston topped the Los Angeles Clippers 106-104 Sunday in winning its fourth straight since losing Rajon Rondo.
Paul Pierce scored a team high 22 points, while Jeff Green and Leandro Barbosa added 14 points each to lead a 52-point contribution from the bench.
The Celtics were encouraged by coach Doc Rivers to take the open shot or move the ball quickly to prevent opposing defenses from double teaming, in Rodno’s absence. They led 98-83 before the Clippers made 15-3 run with Griffin’s free throw with 9:39 to play. Crawford’s layup made it 101-98 with 3:18 remaining.
Jason Terry then put Boston up by five when he beat the 24-second buzzer with a jumper with 1:09 left. Eric Bledsoe countered with a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to 103-101 with 56 seconds remaining. Then Boston’s starting guard Avery Bradley drew an offensive foul on Los Angeles’ Jamal Crawford with 26 seconds to go.
Paul Pierce then held on to the ball before making a 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left to clinch the win.
“If we get a stop there (with) three or four seconds to go, we’ve got plenty of time,” Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said of his decision not to foul Pierce. “If I was going to do it, I would have fouled Courtney Lee early right when he got the ball.”
The Clippers were led by Bledsoe and Crawford with 23 points each. Blake Griffin had 20 points and 11 rebounds.
The Clips are reportedly one of the team’s interested in dealing for Boston center Kevin Garnett, according to several reports.