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Game 50: Magic (32-19) at Celtics (37-12)

Posted by Julian Benbow, Globe Staff  February 6, 2011 01:55 PM

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(AP)

Ray Allen is five 3s away from becoming the all-time 3-point leader. He's knocked down five in a game 114 times.


The Celtics brushed off their loss to the Dallas Mavericks all most as soon as they walked off the floor. Jason Kidd's 3-pointer was simply the last shot of a game that saw plenty of shots go down.

They get no breaks though, facing Eastern Conference rival Orlando in their season series finale. the Magic have admittedly been up and down since the trades that brought in Gilbert Arenas, Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clarke. They're also dealing with injuries. Brandon Bass has a sprained left ankle and is day-to-day.

Tip-off: 2:30 p.m.
Records: Celtics (37-12), Magic (32-19)
Broadcast info: ABC, CSN, WEEI
Officials: Dick Bavetta, Jason Phillips, Olandis Poole

Probable starters:
Celtics:
PG: Rajon Rondo
SG: Ray Allen
SF: Paul Pierce
PF: Kevin Garnett
C: Kendrick Perkins

Magic:
PG Jameer Nelson
SG: Jason Richardson
SF: Jedo Turkoglu
PF: Ryan Anderson
C: Dwight Howard

Storylines:

Allen five away from record: Ray Allen drained three 3-pointers in the Celtics' loss to the Mavericks last Friday, pulling him to within five treys of Reggie Miller's all-time mark. It's highly conceivable for Allen to get all five tonight. He's knocked down five 3-balls 114 times in his career and two times this season (both against the Miami Heat). He's drained at least three in five of his past six games, but he said he won't disrupt the natural order of the offense in pursuit of a record he knows will come eventually.

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"It’s just like it’s been always, but you don’t want to get sidetracked," Allen said. "You’re trying to win a game and you’re trying to stay in your role offensively. So, you’ve just got to find the rhythm of the game.

"I know everybody else is like just go to the 3-point line and get them up. When you’re there, just turn around and shoot it. But I wouldn’t be that way. I wouldn’t do that.

The hype around the record has been building for weeks. He's answered questions about it almost every day since December.

"It hasn’t been bad at all," Allen said. "The process has been fun. I’ve enjoyed it. Business has been usual. Going out and playing games. Our sole purpose has been winning games. This has just been a small blip. I’ve talked about it with you guys and that’s about it."

Not the Dwight Howard effect: Neither of them are playing tonight, and neither of them will play for the forseeable future, but Rivers said even though the Celtics signed Jermaine and Shaquille O'Neal to get bigger, they didn't necessarily see Dwight Howard as an issue. "It was more about the Lakers if you want me to be honest," Rivers said. "But Dwight as well. Teams with bigs. Listen, the Lakers have a plethora of talented bigs. Orlando has a dominant big and to get where we're going we needed size and we needed a lot of it. That's what we did."

Van Gundy's vote: The coaches voted Allen, Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett into the all-star game as reserves, only the second time a team has sent four players as the coaches' choice. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said, "I voted for all four of them."

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