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NBA  FINAL            1ST  2ND  3RD  4TH  TOTAL
                      ---  ---  ---  ---  -----
     BOSTON           28   26   19   14    87   
     WASHINGTON       22   24   22   15    83      FINAL

HIGH SCORERS:   BOS - ANTOINE WALKER 24, PAUL PIERCE 20, J.R. 
                      BREMER 20
                WAS - MICHAEL JORDAN 21, KWAME BROWN 17, JERRY
                      STACKHOUSE 16

HIGH REBOUND:   BOS - MARK BLOUNT 9, ANTOINE WALKER 8, TONY 
                      BATTIE 8
                WAS - CHRISTIAN LAETTNER 10, MICHAEL JORDAN 
                      10, KWAME BROWN 9

HIGH ASSISTS:   BOS - PAUL PIERCE 6, ANTOINE WALKER 3, THREE 
                      PLAYERS WITH 2
                WAS - JERRY STACKHOUSE 7, TYRONN LUE 5, TWO 
                      PLAYERS WITH 2

         ATT:   20,173

Box Score

BOSTON (87) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp E Williams 24 3-6 1-2 1-2 0 3 8 A Walker 44 8-21 5-8 0-8 3 3 24 T Battie 23 2-6 2-2 1-8 0 1 6 P Pierce 42 5-19 10-10 1-4 6 3 20 T Delk 26 1-4 0-0 2-3 2 2 2 M Blount 19 0-0 0-0 4-9 2 4 0 W Mccarty 29 2-7 1-2 0-2 1 3 7 J Bremer 27 8-11 1-2 0-2 2 1 20 G Long 4 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 K Brown 2 0-0 0-0 1-2 0 0 0 B Coles DNP - COACH'S DECISION M Bryant DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 29-74 20-26 10-40 16 20 87 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.392, FT-.769. 3-Point Goals: 9-25, .360 (E Williams 1-2, A Walker 3-6, P Pierce 0-4, W Mccarty 2-7, J Bremer 3-6). Team Rebounds: 6. Blocked Shots: 0. Turnovers:9 (P Pierce 5, A Walker 2, T Delk, M Blount). Steals: 8 (T Delk 2, M Blount 2, P Pierce 2, A Walker, T Battie). WASHINGTON (83) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp J Stackhouse 40 4-12 8-8 1-4 7 5 16 C Laettner 37 4-11 1-2 3-10 2 3 9 B Haywood 5 0-1 0-0 1-1 0 0 0 M Jordan 43 8-17 4-4 0-10 1 2 21 T Lue 38 3-8 3-4 0-4 5 2 10 B Simmons 19 2-3 0-0 1-2 1 5 4 K Brown 32 7-11 3-3 3-9 0 1 17 B Russell 14 0-1 0-0 0-2 2 2 0 J Dixon 12 2-7 0-0 0-1 0 0 6 C Oakley DNP - SORE RIGHT KNEE J White DNP - COACH'S DECISION L Hughes DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 30-71 19-21 9-43 18 20 83 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.423, FT-.905. 3-Point Goals: 4-13, .308 (J Stackhouse 0-3, M Jordan 1-2, T Lue 1-3, B Russell 0-1, J Dixon 2-4). Team Rebounds: 5. Blocked Shots:3 (B Simmons, B Haywood, K Brown). Turnovers:10 (J Stackhouse 5, T Lue 2, M Jordan, B Haywood, K Brown). Steals: 7 (C Laettner 2, M Jordan 2, J Stackhouse, T Lue, B Russell). ------------------------------------------- BOSTON 28 26 19 14 - 87 WASHINGTON 22 24 22 15 - 83 ------------------------------------------- Technical fouls: Washington - 2 (J Stackhouse, 7:06 3rd; T Lue, 0:00 4th). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 20,173. T: 2:13. Officials: James Capers, Joe Crawford, Phil Robinson.


Extended Box

BOSTON (87) AT WASHINGTON (83) BOSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === E WILLIAMS F 24 3-6 1-2 1 1 2 0 3 0 0 8 A WALKER F 44 8-21 5-8 0 8 8 3 3 1 2 24 T BATTIE C 23 2-6 2-2 1 7 8 0 1 1 0 6 P PIERCE G 42 5-19 10-10 1 3 4 6 3 2 5 20 T DELK G 26 1-4 0-0 2 1 3 2 2 2 1 2 M BLOUNT 19 0-0 0-0 4 5 9 2 4 2 1 0 W MCCARTY 29 2-7 1-2 0 2 2 1 3 0 0 7 J BREMER 27 8-11 1-2 0 2 2 2 1 0 0 20 G LONG 4 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 K BROWN 2 0-0 0-0 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 B COLES DNP - COACH'S DECISION M BRYANT DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 29-74 20-26 10 30 40 16 20 8 9 87 (.392) (.769) TEAM REBS: 6 TOTAL TO: 10 (10 PTS) WASHINGTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === J STACKHOUSE F 40 4-12 8-8 1 3 4 7 5 1 5 16 C LAETTNER F 37 4-11 1-2 3 7 10 2 3 2 0 9 B HAYWOOD C 5 0-1 0-0 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 M JORDAN G 43 8-17 4-4 0 10 10 1 2 2 1 21 T LUE G 38 3-8 3-4 0 4 4 5 2 1 2 10 B SIMMONS 19 2-3 0-0 1 1 2 1 5 0 0 4 K BROWN 32 7-11 3-3 3 6 9 0 1 0 1 17 B RUSSELL 14 0-1 0-0 0 2 2 2 2 1 0 0 J DIXON 12 2-7 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 6 C OAKLEY DNP - SORE RIGHT KNEE J WHITE DNP - COACH'S DECISION L HUGHES DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 30-71 19-21 9 34 43 18 20 7 10 83 (.423) (.905) TEAM REBS: 5 TOTAL TO: 11 (19 PTS) BOSTON 28 26 19 14 - 87 WASHINGTON 22 24 22 15 - 83 BLOCKED SHOTS: BOSTON - NONE, WASHINGTON - B SIMMONS, B HAYWOOD, K BROWN. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: BOSTON 9-25 (.360), E WILLIAMS 1-2, A WALKER 3- 6, P PIERCE 0-4, W MCCARTY 2-7, J BREMER 3-6. WASHINGTON 4-13 (.308), J STACKHOUSE 0-3, M JORDAN 1-2, T LUE 1-3, B RUSSELL 0-1, J DIXON 2- 4. TECHNICAL FOULS: WASHINGTON - J STACKHOUSE, T LUE. FLAGRANT FOULS: NONE. OFFICIALS: JAMES CAPERS, JOE CRAWFORD, PHIL ROBINSON. A - 20,173. T - 2:13.


Game Story

WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- Although he did not start, J.R. Bremer may have finished off the Washington Wizards. Bremer came off the bench to score 20 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer with 19 seconds left, and give the playoff-bound Boston Celtics an 87-83 victory over the Wizards, whose postseason dreams are dying. A rookie from St. Bonaventure who has helped plug a huge hole at point guard, Bremer was benched in favor of veteran Tony Delk after performing poorly in a pair of losses. He apparently found the new role to his liking as he made his first five shots upon entering. "It didn't really help me," Bremer said. "I really didn't know what had happened, but coach told me that Tony was going to start, so I just had to be ready, and once I got in, I had to help the team. Coach is always going to make the right decision and I'm going to be with him whichever way he goes." "He's been shooting the basketball well," Celtics coach Jim O'Brien said. "I thought that he's been playing without his usual concentration and we took him out of the starting lineup and he responded in a very professional way - came out and gave us a big game and probably the shot of his pro career." It was Bremer's last shot that was his biggest. Outside the arc, he took a pass from a double-teamed Paul Pierce and drilled a 23-footer to give Boston an 85-83 lead. "Coach told Paul to find me if he got double-teamed and I was wide open and knocked it down," Bremer said. "Yeah, it was definitely the biggest shot of my NBA career." "Tonight, J.R. played huge," Celtics All-Star forward Antoine Walker said. "I think J.R. is very focused right now on just being the best player he can possibly be. He doesn't even worry about it. You see tonight that he just came out, stepped up and played his game." Instead of going to Michael Jordan or Jerry Stackhouse, the Wizards put the ball in the hands of Tyronn Lue, whose pull-up jumper from the foul line was short. A tip attempt by Kwame Brown also missed, and Walker rebounded. "It was called for Jerry," Jordan said. "T-Lue couldn't get it to him and he came off (a screen) and he felt like he had an opportunity to make the shot and he took it." "I felt that I had a good look and I should have made it," Lue said. "Coach (Doug Collins) told me to come off the pick-and-roll and if I was open to shoot it. If not, throw it back to Jerry." Walter McCarty was fouled with 1.1 seconds left. He made the first and missed the second, but Lue - who got a mouthful from Stackhouse during the stoppage in play - grabbed the rebound and called a timeout the Wizards did not have. "We did not do it," Stackhouse said. "We drew up plays and we did not do it." Pierce made the technical foul shot to complete the scoring. Walker scored 24 points and Pierce added 20 for the Celtics (42-36), who clinched their second consecutive playoff berth. They remain sixth in the Eastern Conference. Boston avenged Sunday's home overtime loss to Washington and avoided a sweep in the season series. "I already felt like we were a playoff team, but at the same time, it feels great," Pierce said. "We've been thinking about it all season, and we are all very excited because the East is wide open." Bremer made 8-of-11 shots, including 3-of-6 from the arc. Delk managed just two points on 1-of-4 shooting. "(Bremer) can knock them down," O'Brien said. "To be able to get somebody like that in your fold without having drafted him, and then for an undrafted rookie to get the type of experience he's getting while his team is making the playoffs, I think is really an added bonus." "It's hard to say if he's playoff-ready," Pierce added. "I'd like for him to be like that on a more consistent basis. He had a good game tonight, but like all rookies, he's had his struggles for consistency. I try to stay on him every day and help him realize how important he's going to be for us." Jordan had 21 points and 10 rebounds and Brown added 17 and nine for Washington (36-42), which fell two games behind Milwaukee in the race for the final playoff spot in the East. "The guy we really felt like had to make the big shot (Bremer) made the big shot all night long," Jordan said. "We did everything we could to keep their big two (Pierce and Walker) out. Bremer stepped in and hurt us." The Wizards wore the red and white horizontally striped uniforms of the 1978 Washington Bullets, who won the NBA title. The team changed its nickname in 1997. After briefly taking the lead for the first time in the third quarter, Washington faced a 73-68 deficit entering the final period. But it caught the Celtics at 77-77 with 5:32 to go on a three-point play by Brown, who removed his cornrows to sport a blown-out afro. Walker, who has been in a month-long slump, responded with a 3-pointer. Stackhouse and Pierce traded jumpers before Brown made a tough jumper in the lane and Jordan put home a lob pass from Lue for an 83-82 lead with 1:57 left. The Celtics shot 39 percent (29-of-74). Stackhouse scored 16 points and Lue added 10 for the Wizards, who shot 42 percent (30-of-71). Washington missed nine of its first 10 shots as Boston bolted to a 15-4 lead. Walker worked over Bobby Simmons for 15 points and Bremer added 12 in the first half as the Celtics opened a 54-46 halftime advantage. "I didn't think I was going to miss," Bremer said. "In shootaround today, it felt good and when I came and shot before the game, it felt good. So when I knocked down my first shot, I knew it was going to be a big night for me." A jumper by Christian Laettner capped a 14-2 run that gave the Wizards a 64-61 lead with 4:12 left in the third quarter. The teams traded baskets before Walker scored five points and Bremer four in a 9-2 run that reclaimed a 72-66 lead for the Celts.


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