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Game 76: Celtics (52-23) vs. Pistons (26-49)

Posted by Gary Washburn Globe Staff  April 3, 2011 11:37 AM

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Tip-off: 6 p.m.
Records: Celtics (52-22), Pistons (26-49)
Broadcast info: CSN, WEEI (850 AM)
Officials: Greg Willard, Pat Fraher, Derek Richardson


>Probable starters:
Celtics:
PG: Rajon Rondo
SG: Ray Allen
SF: Paul Pierce
PF: Kevin Garnett
C: Glen Davis

Pistons:
PG Will Bynum
SG: Richard Hamilton
SF: Tayshaun Price
PF: Greg Monroe
C: Chris Wilcox


Storylines:

Must win: If Boston plans on catching Miami and claiming at least the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference, they have to win the next two games against the Pistons and 76ers before Thursday's showdown with the Chicago Bulls. Friday's breakdown against Atlanta was one of the season's most disappointing losses.

Shaq back?: This is getting old but Shaquille O'Neal is supposed to return from two months off either tonight or Tuesday against Philadelphia but Celtics fans won't get excited until he hits the court. Until then, Jermaine O'Neal will be the team's only legitimate center until Nenad Krstic returns from the bone bruise in his right knee.

Don't sleep on the Pistons: Detroit was out of the playoff race weeks ago but the Pistons pushed the Chicago Bulls on Friday and played well in their last visit to TD Garden. The Celtics needed a late rally to beat Detroit 86-82 on Jan. 19 after the Pistons beat Boston on Dec. 29.

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