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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- NEW YORK 25 22 24 29 100 BOSTON 27 17 27 30 101 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: NYK - ALLAN HOUSTON 28, KURT THOMAS 17, LATRELL SPREWELL 17 BOS - PAUL PIERCE 30, TONY BATTIE 20, ERICK STRICKLAND 16

HIGH REBOUND: NYK - MARCUS CAMBY 12, KURT THOMAS 8 BOS - TONY BATTIE 9, ANTOINE WALKER 8

HIGH ASSISTS: NYK - MARK JACKSON 8, LATRELL SPREWELL 7 BOS - ANTOINE WALKER 8, ERICK STRICKLAND 6

ATT: 17,876


Extended Box

NEW YORK (100) AT BOSTON (101)

NEW YORK REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

SPREWELL F 37 5-14 5-7 0 2 2 7 1 4 0 17 THOMAS F 40 7-12 2-2 2 6 8 0 4 0 6 17 CAMBY C 41 5-9 4-6 2 10 12 3 4 0 1 14 HOUSTON G 40 9-18 6-6 0 2 2 6 4 0 6 28 JACKSON G 38 1-2 0-0 0 7 7 8 2 4 3 3 ANDERSON 19 4-7 0-0 1 2 3 1 1 1 0 11 HARRINGTON 15 3-3 4-4 0 1 1 0 3 0 3 10 WARD 10 0-2 0-0 0 0 0 3 3 0 2 0 EISLEY DNP - COACH'S DECISION POSTELL DNP - COACH'S DECISION ROBINSON DNP - COACH'S DECISION SPENCER DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 34-67 21-25 5 30 35 28 22 9 21 100 (.507) (.840) TEAM REBS: 4 TOTAL TO: 21(26 PTS)

BOSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

PIERCE F 46 11-23 5-6 0 5 5 5 5 3 4 30 WALKER F 45 5-15 4-4 2 6 8 8 1 1 4 15 BATTIE C 31 6-9 8-9 4 5 9 0 3 1 0 20 JOHNSON G 16 1-3 0-0 0 1 1 1 2 0 1 3 STRICKLAND G 37 4-10 6-7 0 4 4 6 2 3 3 16 POTAPENKO 17 1-2 2-2 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 4 E WILLIAMS 30 3-6 2-2 0 2 2 2 4 4 1 9 PALACIO 11 1-4 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 MCCARTY 7 1-3 0-0 0 2 2 1 0 1 2 2 ANDERSON DNP - BACK SPASMS BLOUNT DNP - COACH'S DECISION K BROWN DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 33-75 27-30 6 26 32 23 18 14 15 101 (.440) (.900) TEAM REBS: 11 TOTAL TO: 16(16 PTS)

NEW YORK 25 22 24 29 - 100 BOSTON 27 17 27 30 - 101

BLOCKED SHOTS: NEW YORK - CAMBY 2, THOMAS 2, ANDERSON. BOSTON - WALKER, PIERCE, JOHNSON, POTAPENKO. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: NEW YORK 11-19 (.579), SPREWELL 2-4, THOMAS 1-1, HOUSTON 4-5, JACKSON 1-2, ANDERSON 3-5, WARD 0-2. BOSTON 8-24 (.333), PIERCE 3-10, WALKER 1-4, JOHNSON 1-2, STRICKLAND 2-5, E WILLIAMS 1-1, PALACIO 0-1, MCCARTY 0-1. TECHNICALS: NEW YORK - DEFENSIVE THREE, BOSTON - WALKER. OFFICIALS: DERRICK STAFFORD, DICK BAVETTA, PAT FRAHER. A - 17,876. T - 2:17.


Box Score

NEW YORK (100) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Sprewell 37 5-14 5-7 0-2 7 1 17 Thomas 40 7-12 2-2 2-8 0 4 17 Camby 41 5-9 4-6 2-12 3 4 14 Houston 40 9-18 6-6 0-2 6 4 28 Jackson 38 1-2 0-0 0-7 8 2 3 Anderson 19 4-7 0-0 1-3 1 1 11 Harrington 15 3-3 4-4 0-1 0 3 10 Ward 10 0-2 0-0 0-0 3 3 0 Eisley DNP - coach's decision Postell DNP - coach's decision Robinson DNP - coach's decision Spencer DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 34-67 21-25 5-35 28 22 100 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.507, FT-.840. 3-Point Goals: 11-19, .579 (Sprewell 2-4, Thomas 1-1, Houston 4-5, Jackson 1-2, Anderson 3-5, Ward 0-2). Team rebounds: 4. Blocked shots: 5 (Camby 2, Thomas 2, Anderson). Turnovers: 21 (Houston 6, Thomas 6, Harrington 3, Jackson 3, Ward 2, Camby). Steals: 9 (Jackson 4, Sprewell 4, Anderson).

BOSTON (101) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Pierce 46 11-23 5-6 0-5 5 5 30 Walker 45 5-15 4-4 2-8 8 1 15 Battie 31 6-9 8-9 4-9 0 3 20 Johnson 16 1-3 0-0 0-1 1 2 3 Strickland 37 4-10 6-7 0-4 6 2 16 Potapenko 17 1-2 2-2 0-1 0 1 4 E Williams 30 3-6 2-2 0-2 2 4 9 Palacio 11 1-4 0-0 0-0 0 0 2 Mccarty 7 1-3 0-0 0-2 1 0 2 Anderson DNP - back spasms Blount DNP - coach's decision K Brown DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 33-75 27-30 6-32 23 18 101 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.440, FT-.900. 3-Point Goals: 8-24, .333 (Pierce 3-10, Walker 1-4, Johnson 1-2, Strickland 2-5, E Williams 1-1, Palacio 0-1, Mccarty 0-1). Team rebounds: 11. Blocked shots: 4 (Walker, Pierce, Johnson, Potapenko). Turnovers: 16 (Pierce 4, Walker 4, Strickland 3, Mccarty 2, E Williams, Johnson). Steals: 14 (E Williams 4, Pierce 3, Strickland 3, Battie, Mccarty, Potapenko, Walker). ____________________________________________ New York 25 22 24 29 - 100 Boston 27 17 27 30 - 101 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: New York 1 (Defensive Three, 6:57 3rd). Boston 1 (Walker, 3:38 1st). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 17,876. T: 2:17. Officials: Derrick Stafford, Dick Bavetta, Pat Fraher.


Game Story

BOSTON (Ticker) -- An unlikely season continued for the Boston Celtics, with Eric Williams as the unlikely hero.

Williams made the go-ahead 3-pointer with 32 seconds remaining and the Celtics hung on for their third straight win, a 101-100 victory over the reeling New York Knicks.

A frenetic fourth quarter saw the Knicks take a 96-95 lead with 40 seconds to go on a 3-pointer by Latrell Sprewell, who scored 17 points.

On the next possession, Williams -- who came in having made just 7-of-33 3-pointers this season -- drilled one from the arc for a 98-96 edge.

"I was the corner option and that was the option that coach said it was going to be," Williams said. "I hit the shot, you know. Another great shot, another good win for our team and it feels good right now."

"Eric is not really a 3-point shooter and when it's on the line he stepped up and made the shot," teammate Paul Pierce said. "It's all about timing and these guys are stepping it up when the game is on the line."

Williams forced Allan Houston to fumble a pass for a turnover and the Knicks had to foul Pierce, who made 1-of-2 free throws with 18 seconds remaining.

"This is one of those situations where I tried to slow him down a little bit," Williams said. "He was catching the ball and making real quick moves and just for that one instance he slowed down a little bit ... I got a chance to put my hand on the ball and I was sizing up the ball. As he was sizing me up, I was looking at the ball. And my hand hit the ball and Paul picked up the loose ball."

Marcus Camby split a pair from the line and Erick Strickland made two, giving Boston a 101-97 lead with 10 seconds left.

Kurt Thomas made a 3-pointer to pull the Knicks within a point with 3.3 seconds to play. Pierce eluded a foul attempt by Sprewell and passed to Williams, allowing time to run out.

"In the end in that situation you have to try to foul him and I thought I got him, but you know, he didn't make the call," Sprewell said.

Pierce scored 30 points and Tony Battie added a career-high 20 for the Celtics, who improved to 3-0 against the Knicks this season.

Houston scored 28 points for New York, which has lost six in a row. The Knicks also have dropped five straight road games.

"When the team needed me to be there I didn't make the right plays," Houston said. "This is extremely tough, because we had a great chance to win, against a very good team on the road."

Boston (23-14) has not made the playoffs since 1995 and New York (14-23) has not missed them since 1987. However, both those streaks appear to be in jeopardy.

The teams were tied entering the fourth quarter and Pierce hit four free throws to help Boston build a 77-71 lead before the Knicks tied it, 80-80, on a short jumper by Othella Harrington with 7:04 to go.

Strickland and Antoine Walker hit 3-pointers as Boston rebuilt the lead to six points with 4:36 remaining. Again New York rallied, tying it at 93-93 on a free throw by Sprewell with 2:11 left. Pierce answered with a basket at the 1:32 mark.

Strickland had 16 points and eight assists and Walker added 15, eight and eight rebounds for Boston, which shot 44 percent (33-of-75) from the field and made 27-of-30 free throws.

"We have a strong, strong chemistry," Celtics coach Jim O'Brien said. "To get a win like that, for example. Antoine didn't have a great game, but he was still close to a triple-double, so I think he just sucked it up. It's a really tough-minded job that we got done tonight."

Battie made 6-of-9 shots and grabbed nine rebounds in his best game of the season. His previous high was 14 points.

"My effort was pretty much in the flow," Battie said. "We knew that Camby was going to be helping a lot, especially on Paul and Antoine. With him helping on those guys, keeping an eye on them, I was able to knock down a couple of jump shots early."

Strickland started for point guard Kenny Anderson, who sat out with a back strain.

"These are the guys that we're going to need, especially guys keying in on me and Antoine," Pierce said. "The other players are asked to step up and get the job done."

Camby had 14 points and 12 boards for the Knicks, who shot 51 percent (34-of-67) and made 21-of-25 from the line but committed 21 turnovers, the biggest one by Houston.

"We have a tendency late in the game to be such in a hurry to score that we shortcut our patterns," Knicks coach Don Chaney said. "When you're down in games and they're tight, you've got to make sure that you run your offense with precision, use your screens, show poise and patience and I think we're so anxious to score that we forget what got us there."

Houston scored 16 points in the first half as the Knicks erased an early 11-point deficit and opened a 47-44 lead. Pierce had 10 in the third quarter, pulling the Celts into a 71-71 tie.

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