The Celtics have struggled mightily this season with late-game execution and they had another opportunity to seal a victory with one well-executed possession against Sunday against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Paul Pierce took the responsibility in his own hands with the clock winding down and the Celtics desperately needing a hoop. Against defensive menace Matt Barnes, faked a forward dribble and then released one of his customary 3-point stepback jumpers. The result? Swish.
Pierce's 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left helped the Celtics beat the Clippers 106-104, avoiding blowing a 19-point lead and notching another impressive victory without Rajon Rondo.
Pierce scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half as the Celtics barely held on to the hard-charging Clippers, who used the hot-shooting of Jamal Crawford and Eric Bledsoe to creep back into the game.
Bledoe's 3-pointer got the Clippers to within 103-101 with 56.2 seconds left.
After a Celtics turnover, Avery Bradley drew a key offensive foul from Crawford, allowing Pierce to seal the Celtics' fourth straight win.
Leandro Barbosa and Jeff Green each added 14 points from Jason Terry scored 13.
Celtics hold on for win over Clippers
Boston Globe | Feb 3