Paul Pierce couldn't hit the broad side of a barn (0-10 FG, 0-5 3PT), but played solid defense. Rajon Rondo recorded the quietest triple-double in NBA history. The former Kentucky Wildcat logged 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists. Ray Allen added 13, while Von Wafer tallied 10 on 4-5 shooting off the bench.
Chris Bosh scored a game-high 24 points on 8-11 shooting. Even still, I felt the Heat should've gone to him more. I guess that's what happens when you have a team filled with ball hogs.
LeBron James recorded 22 points, seven boards, and seven dimes on 10-21 shooting and Dwyane Wade totaled 19 points on just 6-17 shooting. The Miami bench combined to shoot 2-12 from the field and 1-10 from long range.
The Heat led by as many as seven in the 1st half, but held only a four-point advantage at the break. In fact, the game was knotted at 39-39 with 1:00 to go in the 2nd, but Miami closed out the frame with a 4-0 run.
It was an eventful 3rd quarter, highlighted with a Wade flagrant foul on Garnett and a boneheaded double dribble by Wafer. Despite the chippy play, Boston nearly doubled Miami's point total for the frame, 35-18. The C's took a 74-61 lead into the 4th.
Miami battled back and cut it's deficit to just a pair when Wade knocked down two free throws with 4:51 to go. However, the Celtics battled back. Davis canned an elbow jumper and then the C's forced a shot clock violation. With just over a minute left, Bosh hit a jumper to bring Miami within two again. After misses from Pierce and Rondo, the Heat held possession, trailing 83-81, with 18.2 seconds left.
James took Pierce to the rim. Though he missed the shot, he did pick up the foul. After missing the front half, James cut the Boston lead to just one. He nearly stole the inbounds pass, but the Heat were eventually forced to foul Davis with 6.3 seconds left. Big Baby really should've given the ball up to Pierce, despite his struggles throughout the contest.
Fortunately, he drained both shots and gave Boston an 85-82 advantage. Mike Miller failed to connect on a trey from the top of the key and the Celtics prevailed with the win.
With the victory, Boston improves to 39-14 and reclaims the top stop in the Eastern Conference. The Heat, on the other hand, fall to 39-15. The C's get a few days off, but return to action Wednesday night when the Nets visit Beantown. Boston and New Jersey tip off at 7:30 p.m. Stephen Bailey 2/13/2011 03:50:00 PM Tweet Edit