End of the game, Celtics 103-91 The Celtics certainly needed this one. Back home after a disappointing road trip, in which they dropped all three games, the Celtics managed to build a 20-point lead, watch it disappear, then regain control. They relied on 40 points from Paul Pierce plus 20 from Rajon Rondo to overcome Kyrie Irving and the Cavaliers. Pierce got a number of standing ovations tonight, the last one when he was taken out with 1:03 left in the game.
Fourth quarter, 3:13, Celtics 98-85 And that’s 40 points for Paul Pierce now. He seems to be able to make any shot he wants tonight. Any shot. They are showing Pierce on the scoreboard, and he just got a standing ovation from the crowd here.
Fourth quarter, 4:30, Celtics 94-84 Pierce gets the lead back to double digits with a pair of free throws. The Celtics are shooting 57.9 percent in this game.
Fourth quarter, 6:17, Celtics 88-82 Pierce just had his first miss from beyond the arc tonight. He’s still 6-for-7 from there, with 34 points on a night that the Celtics really need his help as a 20-point lead is down to four.
Fourth quarter, 9:19, Celtics 82-77 The Cavaliers are on a 17-2 run right now, and are down just five points. The Celtics can’t afford to blow this game against an inferior opponent.
End of the third quarter, Celtics 82-72 The Cavaliers cut the deficit down to 10 points at the end of the third quarter with Pierce and Rondo on the bench. Kyrie Irving has 21 points, but interestingly has zero assists. Rondo is up to eight assists, to go along with his 14 points.
Third quarter, 3:42, Celtics 78-59 Paul Pierce gets a nice ovation as he exits, being replaced by Jeff Green. Pierce leaves 6-for-6 on threes, with 32 points.
Third quarter, 5:56, Celtics 72-57 Paul Pierce. Well, that was certainly needed for the Celtics. Pierce is leading the team as they break open this game against the woeful Cavaliers. Pierce has been outstanding, shooting 9-for-11 overall, including 6-for-6 from the line and an amazing 5-for-5 from beyond the arc. He has 29 points so far.
Third quarter, 7:53, Celtics 67-55 Paul Pierce is up to 24 points, and the Celtics are doing a much better job on defense than they have been of late. They’re holding the Cavs to 43.4 percent shooting while shooting 60.5 percent on their end. The 12-point lead is their biggest of the night.
Halftime, Celtics 54-46 Kevin Garnett looks like he’s enjoying being back at the power forward spot. He has 10 points at the half. Pierce leads the team with 15 and Rondo has 10. Alonzo Gee has 11 for the Cavaliers. Sullinger leads the Celtics with five rebounds, and Jason Terry has three assists.
Second quarter, 1;32, Celtics 52-44 Nice alley oop from Rondo to Garnett pushed the lead back to eight points as some fans start chanting “MVP.”
Second quarter, 4:38, Celtics 45-36 The Celtics are opening things up a bit here in the second quarter. Paul Pierce just hit a three — he’s 3-for-3 on threes — to put the Celtics up by nine points, their biggest lead of the game.
Second quarter, 5:31, Celtics 40-36 The Cavs are featuring a balanced scoring attack with no player with double digits in points. The Celtics have Rondo with 12 and Pierce with 10. Rondo still is without an assist tonight.
Second quarter, 8:43, Celtics 32-31 Even with no Anderson Varejao for the Cavs, the Celtics are still being out-rebounded by 14-13.
End of the first quarter, Celtics 27-25 So the Celtics aren’t exactly impressing with their defensive effort so far in this game after some lackluster defense on the road in the last three games. Rajon Rondo has 12 points and four rebounds and zero assists so far.
First quarter, 2:28, Celtics 23-19 The Cavs missed a chance to get their first lead of the game, and that turned into a Paul Pierce three pointer at the other end. Pierce added a second three after the Cavs got a basket. He is up to 10 points on the game, followed by Rondo with eight.
First quarter, 5:01, 13-13 Rajon Rondo has gotten out to a quick start for the C’s. But he’s the only one. Rondo has eight of the Celtics’ 13 points in this game, plus three rebounds. Jason Terry has three points, and Brandon Bass has two.
First quarter, 10:02, Celtics 5-0 — The Celtics have started well against the Cavaliers. But, of course, it’s early. Jason Collins did just pick up his first foul in the game.
Pregame — We’re about to tip off here at the Garden. It will be interesting to see how the changes to the starting lineup affect the Celtics. Jason Collins and Jason Terry were inserted into the lineup by Doc Rivers after the Celtics dropped all three games on their road trip.