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Final: Celtics 88, Trail Blazers 78

Posted by Gary Washburn Globe Staff  January 27, 2011 10:46 PM

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Final, Celtics 88-78: Celtics pull away early in the fourth quarter and hold on after Portland hits three straight 3-pointers in the final minutes. Paul Pierce scores 17 for the Celtics and Kevin Garnett adds 10 and nine rebounds. LaMarcus Aldridge finishes with 17 points and 16 rebounds but never appeared comfortable offensively.

Fourth quarter, 25.9, Celtics 86-77: Wesley Matthews misses a layup and then putback and Kevin Garnett sinks two more free throws. Now it's a matter of time.

Fourth quarter, 33.6, Celtics 84-77: Glen Davis gets fouled and sinks two free throws. Portland ball. The Celtics are without Paul Pierce, who raced to the locker room with about two minutes left. Unsure of injury.

Fourth quarter, 37.4, Celtics 82-77: These Celtics never do anything easy and Portland has scored 9 points in the past 1:30 to make it close. Celtics have the ball coming out of a timeout. But this game shouldn't be this close.

Fourth quarter, 2:37, Celtics 78-65: A solid defensive quarter and offensive execution have carried the Celtics in the fourth quarter and now they are trying to lock this game down and begin the West Coast swing in positive fashion. Blazers are shooting just 35 percent from the field.

Fourth quarter, 8:57, Celtics 70-60: Celtics are running the ball and playing good defense and have scored some transition baskets. Portland is pesky but the Celtics have erased their turnover problems and made it tougher for the Blazers to score easy buckets,

End of third quarter, Celtics 64-58: Boston had a nice 10-point lead before being outscored 6-2 in the final 3:23 and now the Celtics will have to earn this win with a strong final quarter. Kendrick Perkins is one rebound away from a double-double while Paul Pierce has 17 points for the Celtics. LaMarcus Aldridge has 15 points and 13 rebounds for Portland.

Third quarter, 3:23, Celtics 62-52: This is what happens when you take care of the ball. Celtics are not creating more scoring chances for the Blazers and Ray Allen has canned two straight 3-pointers while Kendrick Perkins has 8 points and 9 rebounds.

Third quarter, 6:21, Celtics 50-46: The Celtics are blowing countless opportunities to create some distance with bad turnovers. They have a whopping 16 so far and only 11 free throws and some good defense are retaining this lead. The Celtics badly need to take care of the ball. LaMarcus Aldridge has 11 points and 11 rebounds while Paul Pierce has 17 for Boston.

Halftime, Celtics 41-37 Right now, things are all over the place for the Celtics and for the Blazers it's organized chaos. Turnovers, techs, alley-oops. Poor shooting, poor rebounding. And still, it's a two-shot game and the Celtics are ahead. Paul Pierce has 14 points on 6 of 9 shooting and might have to keep firing with Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen combining to go 4 of 14 from the floor.

Leaders at the half
Pierce, 14
Aldridge, 9

Garnett, two others, 4
Aldridge, 11

Rondo, 4
Miller, Mills, 3
Second quarter, 2:58, Blazers 34-33Oh, it's ugly. The shoving's just the start. The rims are going to need treatment from all the denting. The Celtics can't keep hold of the ball (11 turnovers). The pace is frantic, and it's still a 1-point game. LaMarcus Aldridge is taking all the shots for Portland (8 points on 4 of 11 shooting) but Patty Mills (6 points, two rebounds, one assist) and Dante Cunningham were the early spark in the quarter.

First quarter, 2:50, Celtics 17-12: The game is physical but the Celtics are playing some tough defense, especially against LaMarcus Aldridge, who is 2-for-5 from the field with four points. Kendrick Perkins is in the game and has already hit two free throws.

First quarter, 5:14, Celtics 13-10: Game has already turned physical as Joel Pryzbilla has flattened Kevin Garnett and stood over him and gotten tangled up with Rajon Rondo. Ray Allen has five points, including an alley-oop that resembled his UConn days.

First quarter, 9:26, Celtics 3-2: Rajon Rondo starts the game by missing two free throws and LaMarcus Aldridge follows with an alley-oop. Ray Allen opens the scoring for the Celtics with a 3-pointer. The Celtics look a little sluggish so far.

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