NBA Game Summary - LA Clippers at Boston
(Wednesday, February 9th)
Final Score: Boston 94, LA Clippers 89
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Paul Pierce scored 25 points with 10 rebounds and nine assists to lead the Boston Celtics over the Los Angeles Clippers, 94-89, at FleetCenter. Mark Blount added 17 with eight boards in the win.
Raef LaFrentz scored 16 points for the Celtics, who have won four of their last five games.
Elton Brand scored a game-high 30 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Clippers, who have lost three straight games. Forward Corey Maggette returned after missing time with a shoulder injury and contributed 21 points and eight rebounds in the loss.
Boston, which had trailed by 20 just before halftime, scored 16 unanswered points during a fourth-quarter rally. A three-pointer by LaFrentz capped the run with the Celtics up, 81-79 with 5:17 left in the fourth quarter. It was the first lead of the game for Boston, which would not trail again. Davis went 4-for-4 from the free throw line and Pierce went 3-of-4 from the stripe in the closing seconds to help the Celtics hang on for the win.
"It's tough to lose like that," said Brand. "I think that we thought it was over and had it won, but it's never over in this league. We should know better."
The Clippers had led 73-65 after three quarters and scored the first six points of the final stanza to open a 14-point advantage before Boston rallied. Los Angeles was just 8-of-36 from the field after the break following a sparkling first half.
Leading 60-42 at halftime, the Clippers saw their advantage shrink to eight points after a 13-2 run by Boston. A jumper by Kendrick Perkins capped the run with the Los Angeles lead down to 67-59 with 3:19 left in the third quarter. The Clippers held on to lead by eight heading into the fourth quarter.
Boston was 9-of-17 from the field in the third quarter to get back in the game, while the Clippers struggled to a 3-of-15 effort in the frame.
"We wanted to make sure we came out with the same type of execution in the second half," said Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy. "We didn't come out and do it."
The Clippers shot 58 percent (22-for-38) from the field in the opening half and went to the locker room with an 18-point lead. Brand was 8-of-11 from the floor and 4-of-5 from the free throw line to lead all scorers with 20 first- half points.
Rick Brunson hit a pair of three-pointers in the first half for Los Angeles, which led by seven after the opening quarter.
"Our team of late, we don't win pretty all the time, but we are starting to become a gutsy basketball team," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers. "Before the year, we talked about mental toughness a lot about this team and that we needed to get it. And we're starting to get it, we really are."
Los Angeles guard Kerry Kittles sat out again with a groin injury...LA fell to 1-3 on its nine-game road trip...Boston has won nine of the last 11 in the series...The Clippers have lost nine of their last 10 road games.
02/09 23:25:14 ET