Ray Allen led the charge for Boston with 20 points as they went on to defeat the LA Clippers 90-77 last night in Boston. Kevin Garnett hit all five of his attempted field goals in his 18 minutes played, finishing with 12 points. Rajon Rondo ran the floor well for the C’s contributing 14 points with seven assists.
Zach Randolf scored 17 points with 14 rebounds for LA. Baron Davis had a great all around game with 13 points, seven rebounds and eight assists. The key for the Celtics was converting the Clippers 25 turnovers into 25 points. “You definitely can’t let the Celtics get a lot of easy buckets,” said Clippers Marcus Camby. “They are one of the efficient teams, offensively, in the league and if you give them the extra point on turnovers, it’s going to make it impossible to beat a team like that.?
The Celtics have been on a role lately winning four straight as they head to Orlando to square off against the Magic this Wednesday at 8:00 pm. Orlando is currently just one game behind Boston in the East.
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The Boston Bruins clinched the Northeast Division title after beating the New Jersey Devils 4-1 last Sunday in Boston. Michael Ryder scored the opening goal 16 minutes into the first period and from there the Bruins were on cruise control. In the second period they dominated in goals 3-1, and both teams were left scoreless in the final period.
This was a big win for the Bruins after coming off a 3-2 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings last Thursday night. “We really wanted this game,” said Bruins Marc Savard. “The biggest game of the year for us, the way we’ve been going, and we certainly proved we can do it.” The Bruins will try to keep the winning alive for the remainder of the season and head into the post-season stronger than ever. Next they will match up against the Maple Leafs Saturday, March 18th at 7 p.m.
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Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen were sighted boarding the team’s plane to San Antonio for tomorrow night’s game against the Spurs. Garnett has been injured since February 19th and Allen recently suffered a hyper extended elbow last Tuesday against the Bulls.
This will mark the first time Garnett has traveled with the team since his injury. Celtics head coach Doc Rivers said they are going to take Garnett’s possible return day by day. With this said, for the past two practices Garnett has been involved in successful work outs and could be ready to go Friday. After San Antonio the C’s will head to Memphis, Tennessee for a Saturday night game against the Grizzlies.
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Paul Pierce led the Boston Celtics with 36 points to win out over the Miami Heat in overtime 112-108 last night in Boston. He was the only big 3 member present as Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett were sidelined with injuries. Rajon Rondo picked up his game for the C’s scoring 27 points while dishing out 10 assists. With 13 games to go in the regular season Boston was able to clinch the Atlantic Division with the win.
The Miami heat also had injury troubles with their star player Dwayne Wade recently injuring his right hip flexor. Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers helped the Heat give the Celtics a run for their money, scoring 21 and 19. “It showed that even without D-Wade we’re still going to fight,” Chalmers said. “We’re a good team.”
Though they were able to pull off the overtime win at home, the Celtics need to get healthy soon for the post season. Leon Powe, Tony Allen, and Brian Scalabrine were inactive along with Garnett and Allen. Pierce believes the team morale is high after the victory saying “we know that we are injured, but just to get back on the winning mind-frame is big for us.”
The Celtics are on their way to San Antonio to match up against the Spurs Friday at 8:30 p.m.
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The 2009 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is about to set off, and the level of excitement is higher than ever. There seems to be a lesser gap between the top and mid-ranked teams, knowing 19 of the 25 top teams lost in the week leading up to the bracket selections.
Look for UCLA vs. VCU to be a tight game in the Eastern region. UCLA has been able to reach three consecutive Final Fours, but VCU has the potential to create an upset. They were able to knock off Duke in the first round 2 years ago and continued on to lose to Pitt in overtime. VCU will rely on Eric Maynor to keep them going offensively. Maynor has averaged 22.4 points a game this season, making him 11th in the country in scoring.
The Western region will feature Washington vs. Mississippi State. The game will showcase two of the best big men in the tournament, Washington’s Jon Brockman and MSU’s Jarvis Varnado. Varnado leads the nation in shots blocked, and Brockman has led the Pac-10 in total rebounds for three years straight. Washington is ranked 13th in scoring but MSU might be able to counter their attack knowing they are listed 17th in field-goal defense.
Siena vs. Ohio State will be the game to watch in the Midwest region. Siena has been competitive with powerhouse teams such as Kansas and Pitt this year, and is also remembered for knocking off #4 Vanderbilt last season in the first round. Ohio State has struggled defending 3-pointers, but they shouldn’t have an issue with Siena as they shot 33.5 percent from 3 all season. Siena starts a big line up with three guys over 6’5″, but OSU will keep their 7 foot freshmen B.J. Mullens guarding the paint.
The Southern region will showcase Syracuse vs. Stephen F. Austin this afternoon. Syracuse performed brilliantly in the big East tournament, upsetting UConn in 6 overtimes and just falling short of winning the Big East conference. The Orangemen are eighth in the country in scoring, but their opponent S.F. Austin is ranked 2nd in field goal D. Syracuse should be able to come out on top, but it won’t be easy.
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The Boston Bruins split their recent weekend campaign, losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-4 which followed a close win over the Islanders 2-1. Against New York on Saturday the Bruins put in their first two shots passed Islanders goalie Yann Davis. Tim Thomas had 21 saves for the Bruins, only giving up one goal to Mark Streit in the first.
Late in the third period Milan Lucic and Blake Wheeler were both in the penalty box for tripping, creating a five on three advantage for the Islanders. New York couldn’t capitalize and the Bruins were able to luckily hold on for the win.
Sunday’s game in Pittsburgh was more of an offensive battle with the score at 2-2 just after the first period. Blake Wheeler scored the only goal of the second period for Boston to give them a 3-2 lead. Things went sour at the start of the third when the Penguins scored back to back goals in the first minute. The Bruins were able to score once near the end, but it was not nearly enough to match Pittsburgh’s four goals in the final period.
Boston remains on top of the East heading into the final stretch of the regular season. They will square off against the Los Angeles Kings Thursday, March 19th at the TD Banknorth Garden.
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The Boston Celtics were unable to find a rhythm last Sunday against the Milwaukee Bucks, losing 77-86. Kendrick Perkins scored a career high 26 points with 12 rebounds for the C’s, but it wasn’t enough to keep them in contention. The Celtics had 25 turnovers, setting the mark for the most they?ve had in a single game all year.
“With 25 turnovers, we gave up 21 offensive rebounds. We held them to 32 percent shooting and we lost the game,” Perkins said. “We just can’t win like that.”
Charlie Villanueva and Richard Jefferson lead the Bucks to victory, contributing 19 and 17 points. Paul Pierce had 15 points while pulling down 11 boards despite his squad coming up short. The Celtics will be in Chicago next as they are set to go against the Bulls tonight at 8:30 p.m.
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The Pittsburg Panthers and Duke Blue Devils have earned the number 1 and 2 seeds for the upcoming men’s basketball NCAA tournament. Pittsburg (28-4) serves as a heavy favorite to reach the final four with their physical defense and multiple offensive options. Their big men Sam Young and DeJuan Blair have led them in scoring all year, averaging 19 and 16 points per game.
Duke is hungry for a successful run after going 1-2 in their past two NCAA tournament appearances. Gerald Henderson, Kyle Singler, and Jon Scheyer will lead their offense. They have some of the strongest guards in the tournament, but their inside game lacks.
Villanova clinched the number 3 seed in the East this year, finishing with a 26-7 regular season record. They will be a strong contender as they have held opponents to 67 points per game all year while shooting 37 percent from 3 point range. Xavier (ranked #4) could be a team to upset the top seeds if they find a way to play close to their early season form. They started their season off strong with a 20-2 record, but then slipped in the standings after going 5-5 in their last 10 games. Look for Florida State, UCLA, Texas, and Tennessee to possibly make strong runs of their own.
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The top seeded Boston Bruins recently acquired right wing Mark Recchi and defenseman Steve Montador, who are both expected to play as soon as tonight?s game against the Phoenix Coyotes. This will be a must win game for Boston as they look to snap out of their current losing streak. Although they are still hanging on to first place, they have lost eight out of their last eleven games.
In order to get Recchi the Bruins traded away forward Martin Karsum and defenseman Matt Lashoff to the Tampa Bay Lightning. Montador was gained by giving away Petteri Nokelainen to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, who hasn?t played a game for the B’s since getting hit in the face with a stick in early February.
Recchi is very excited to be in Boston and start contributing. “To get picked up by a first-place team is really nice and comforting. “It’s a team that thinks I can help, and I’m going to do everything I can do,” said Recchi. “Boston’s been pretty successful the last few years with other sports. I think it?s Bruins time.” Boston Bruins tickets are now available!
Paul Pierce netted 31 points, including the go-ahead shot with 20.9 seconds left for the C’s to win over the New Jersey Nets last night 115-111. After notching the win the Boston Celtics joined the Cleveland Cavaliers as the only teams to already have a spot for the upcoming post-season. Cleveland has the top rank in the East so far, and Boston is just one game behind.
Rajon Rondo had a key night for the C’s with 20 points, five assists, and five rebounds. Kendrick Perkins scored 17 points with 13 rebounds, while Ray Allen totaled for 16 points. Despite Vince Carters 34 point performance, the Nets were not able to beat out the Celtics in the end. Devin Harris also contributed for the Nets, adding 25 points and 11 assists.
The Nets fought all the way to the last few seconds when Carter missed his last field goal attempt, leading to two made free throws by Allen. “They got what they wanted,” said Carter speaking of the Celtics execution down the stretch. “Paul shot the ball unbelievable. Great teams do that. We are trying to develop that same mentality and I think we learned a lot tonight.”
The Celtics will host the Cavaliers tomorrow night and fight for the #1 spot in the East. This battle may serve as a preview for what is to come in this years playoffs.
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