Celtics 96, Sixers 86

FINAL 96-86 Celtics: After Lou Williams hits one free throw, Paul Pierce is fouled again and hits two and this one is over. An ugly win but it never really felt like the Celtics would lose grip on this one. Washington’s next with a chance to get win No. 40 on Sunday.

Kevin Garnett turns in another solid performance with 22 points and 8 rebounds while Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo each scored 16. Just seven points for Pierce.


44.4 94-85 Celtics: Thaddeus Young misses badly on 3-pointer and Kevin Garnett gathers rebound, is foul and hits two free throws.

55.9 92-85 Celtics: Pierce sinks two, the first Celtic points in 2 1/2 minutes.


55.9 90-85 Celtics: The C’s try to hold on in the final minute but the offense has stopped scoring. Paul Pierce to the line for two shots.

2:33 90-83 Celtics: Boston seems intent of making this thing interesting even though the 76ers are a basket or two from being down for the count. Rajon Rondo just missed a dunk that could have made it a 9-point lead and Andre Iguodala was fouled on a layup atttempt. He goes to the line for two with a chance to make it a two-possession game.

5:50 84-78 Celtics: The C’s had a chance to seal this one but a couple of empty possessions followed by a 3-pointer from Thaddeus Young and a couple of Lou Williams baskets has made this interesting.

7:36 80-74 Celtics: Philadelphia is beginning to make those mistakes that bad teams make in the fourth quarter and the Celtics have been efficient, if nothing else. Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen each have 16 while Lou Williams has 16 for the 76ers.


2:40 67-63 Celtics: Off night for Paul Pierce — 1 for 7 from the floor 0 for 2 from 3.

4:40, 60-59 Celtics: Rajon Rondo’s scored 8 of the Celtics 14 points this quarter, driving to the rim for all of them.
8;40, Tie 50-50: Lou Williams made two big buckets, KG turned a Kendrick Perkins block into a easy layup (his fifth straight make), and the two teams are back to trading baskets.

End of Half, Celtics 46-43: The second unit managed to put together some solid defense and Celtics held the Sixers to 40 percent in the second quarter. Elton Brand, who put up 23 points  on the Celtics in December, has 14 so far. So does Ray Allen. The Celtics have four 3-pointers from four different players. Nate Robinson, again, gave the Cs an instant spark off the bench, but the second unit as a while has been strong from Glen Davis (6 points) to Rasheed Wallace (5) to Brian Scalabrine (in the rotation early because with Tony Allen out).

3:22 Celtics 42-39: Another tech for Kendrick Perkins. He was being mugged under the basket by two defenders including Willie Green. Joe Crawford called the foul but as the whole thing broke up, Perk was a little heated and threw his arms a little as if to say, “Get off me.” Green made the technical free throw.

8:55 Celtics 35-30: Nate Robinson didn’t hesitate to pull and knock down a 3 on the first play of the quarter. The offensive is coming easy for both sides (Philly — 60 percent, Boston — 61.9). Stops have been a different matter.

End of Quarter, Sixers 25-23: Ray Allen went glass on a short jumper to give him 11-first quarter points, but find themselves in another situation where their starters aren’t getting stops early. The Sixers are shotting 57.1 percent. The second-unit’s been strong on both ends, and they’re about to take the floor.

2:28 Sixers 23-18: Elton Brand’s got 12 points already and the Sixers are shooting 64.7 percent. 

6:45 Celtics 13-9: Kevin Garnett hit from the baseline then from the top of the key to give the Celtics their first lead, he then hit an 11-footer to make it six straight.

10:00 Sixers 9-3: The Sixers don’t look nearly as depressed as Eddie Jordan made them sound before the game. They’ve scored off a couple Boston turnovers and Andre Iguodala’s got five early.

Where the Sixers are out of Answers and the Celtics can’t go a day without someone on the injury report. 
Just when you thought it was safe to say the Cs were at full-strength, that fall that Tony Allen took Wednesday against the Bobcats turned out to be more painful that he thought. He’ll sit out tonight’s game with a banged up hip, which will likely mean more time for Marcus Landry.  
The Celtics are awaiting the arrival of Michael Finley, who should be in Boston tomorrow, though coach Doc Rivers said he’s in no rush to work him in. Although the past couple weeks have proven there are no guarantees, the Sixers — a playoff team just a year ago — are going through so much that their goal right now is just to stay inspired. 
The teary-eyed reunion with Allen Iverson ended ugly. Iverson’s wife filed for divorce the same day it became known that he wouldn’t be back with the team. 
The Philadelphia Inquirer writes:


Allen might have seen this day coming, but that probably doesn’t soften the blow.

His basketball career is potentially over. His 4-year-old daughter is suffering from an undisclosed illness. And, now, his high-school sweetheart is leaving him.

On Tuesday – the same day Sixers president and general manager Ed Stefanski announced that Iverson was done for the season – his wife filed for divorce.

Tawanna Iverson declared in the divorce petition filed in Fulton County (Ga.) Superior Court, that their 8 1/2-year marriage is “irretrievably broken.”

Her Atlanta-based attorney, John Mayoue, declined to comment yesterday on what led to the decision. He said Tawanna, who typically shuns the media spotlight, had preferred that the case not be publicized. The Iversons have lived in Atlanta since August.

News of the divorce was first reported yesterday by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

“Mrs. Iverson wishes this to be a private matter between her and her husband and therefore we will not be making any comment at this time,” Mayoue told the Daily News.

At Sixers practice yesterday, a team spokesman said the coaches and players would not comment on Iverson’s personal situation. Stefanski also declined to comment.

Iverson’s agent, Leon Rose, had no comment.

The couple has been living in a “state of separation,” according to court papers filed by Tawanna Iverson. She is requesting sole custody of their five children, ages 17 months to 15 years.

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