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Ray Allen scored 27 points and hit 6 three pointers as the Boston Celtics knocked off the Washington Wizards for the second straight night, 100-92. The Celtics were also led by Captain Paul Pierce who had 21 points and 8 rebounds. The still winless Wizards were led by Andray Blatche who had a season-high 28 points.
The Celtics and Wizards slugged it out for three and a half quarters before Allen hit an open 3 at 8:50 in the 4th quarter. Moments later Marquis Daniels converted a layup-and-1 as the Celtics stole the momentum for good. The Celtics and Wizards traded the lead 14 times throughout the contest before Boston went on an 8-0 run midway through the 4th.
Wizards head coach Flip Saunders’ visit to Boston was cut short when he was ejected less than 2 minutes into the 1st quarter. Saunders was hit with a technical after arguing a no-call on a Greg Steimsma block. When awarded a technical, Saunders stormed onto the court and got tossed.
Celtics’ rookie, Greg Steimsma, got his first career start filling in for winded center Jermaine O’Neal and stepped up with 13 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks in 21 minutes of action. Steimsma received a rousing ovation from the TD Banknorth Garden crowd when he checked out of the game with 5 minutes left in the 1st quarter.
After losing their first 3 games of the season, the Celtics have now won their last 3 to pull them into a first place tie in the Atlantic division with the Philadelphia 76ers.
One night after tremendous performances from Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett, the pair struggled to get it going for the Celtics. The duo combined to go a mere 6-16 from the field for 16 points. Rondo also turned the ball over 7 times.
Allen and Pierce were able to lift the Celtics with a very efficient combined shooting performance. Allen and Pierce combined to go 10-16 from beyond the arc. As a team, the Celtics shot 50% from 3 point range.
The Celtics had trouble slowing down JaVale McGee for a second straight night. The Wizards center recorded 17 points and pulled down 14 rebounds. Brandon Bass continued his bid for the 6th man of the year award by contributing 14 points and 6 rebounds from the Celtics’ bench.
The Celtics are at home again Wednesday night when they host the New Jersey Nets.