NBA Game Summary - Boston at Sacramento
(Tuesday, February 16th)
Final Score: Boston 95, Sacramento 92
Sacramento, CA (Sports Network) - Paul Pierce scored 17 points and Rasheed Wallace provided a bench spark with 17 points as well in Boston's 95-92 victory over Sacramento.
Ray Allen scored 15 points and Eddie House added 12 for Boston, which snapped a two-game skid despite shooting just 37.5 percent from the floor and getting a pedestrian nine-point, nine-rebound effort from Kevin Garnett.
"I thought our starters were able to get into a nice groove, first game back from the break," Garnett said. "It's one of the most difficult, but I thought it was a team effort tonight."
Omri Casspi led Sacramento with 19 points, Tyreke Evans added 17 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists and Jason Thompson notched a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds off the bench for Sacramento, which saw its two-game winning streak end thanks in part to a 2-of-10 effort from the charity stripe in the tightly-contested fourth quarter.
"I thought they played with great intensity and we did too. It was a playoff atmosphere out there. It was such a great effort by our guys. It hurts, but I'm proud of the progress," said Kings head coach Paul Westphal.
Trailing 76-69 entering the fourth period, Sacramento went on an extended burst to eventually take the lead around the four-minute mark. Casspi's trey woke up the home fans and capped a 16-8 stretch to hand the Kings an 85-84 lead. Pierce responded with a jumper, but Thompson answered on the other end for an 87-86 game with 2:42 on the clock.
Pierce, the Three-Point Champion during All-Star weekend, drained a 26-foot bomb to push the Celtics back in front by two with 1:47 to play. Wallace calmly sank two free throws with 15.4 seconds left after the Kings missed four free throws of their own to push the margin out to 91-87.
Evans refused to let the Kings go quietly into the night, draining a long trey for a one-point game. Again, and unlike Sacramento, Boston capitalized from the charity stripe, as Allen calmly sank a pair of free throws with 5.6 seconds to play. Boston fouled instead of letting the Kings get off a three- point attempt, and Casspi cut the deficit to one with two free throws with 4.2 seconds remaining.
The trips to the free-throw line continued with two Pierce makes with 2.4 seconds left, and again the Celtics fouled. This time Casspi missed the crucial first attempt then missed the second as well with seven-tenths of a second left. Sacramento got the rebound but could get off just a short jumper before the horn.
The Kings led by as many as seven at 17-10 on a Casspi trey in the first stanza, but Boston worked its way back to a 30-30 stalemate after 12 minutes of game action. Casspi scored 10 in the period as each team made over 50 percent of its shots.
Boston tallied 10 points in succession capped by House's deep three for a 47-37 edge just over midway through the second. The lead grew as high as 11, but the Kings trimmed the deficit to five at 57-52 at the half. Both teams cooled off considerably in the second stanza with the Kings hitting on just 30.4 percent from the floor.
The margin stayed relatively fluid throughout the third and Boston took a seven-point edge at 76-69 into the fourth period. Again, both teams didn't find the mark in the third quarter, with Boston making just 27.8 percent of its shots and the Kings finding the bottom of the net just 26.3 percent of the time.
Pierce made 2-of-4 from beyond the arc...The Celtics made all seven of their free-throw attempts in the final period...Sacramento made 9-of-20 from beyond the arc...Boston has won five straight in the series.
02/17 03:01:19 ET