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NBA   FINAL            1ST  2ND  3RD  4TH   TOTAL
                       ---  ---  ---  ---   -----
      BOSTON           27   24   20   26    97   
      CHARLOTTE        21   26   23   22    92      FINAL

HIGH SCORERS:   BOS - PAUL PIERCE 33, RAEF LAFRENTZ 12, RICKY 
                      DAVIS 11
                CHA - EMEKA OKAFOR 20, PRIMOZ BREZEC 18, 
                      KAREEM RUSH 17

HIGH REBOUND:   BOS - PAUL PIERCE 9, THREE PLAYERS WITH 6
                CHA - EMEKA OKAFOR 12, PRIMOZ BREZEC 8, JASON 
                      HART 7

HIGH ASSISTS:   BOS - GARY PAYTON 6, MARK BLOUNT 4, TWO 
                      PLAYERS WITH 3
                CHA - JASON HART 10, KEITH BOGANS 4, GERALD 
                      WALLACE 3

         ATT:   11,129

Box Score

BOSTON (97) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp P Pierce 34 10-18 13-16 0-9 3 4 33 R LaFrentz 29 5-8 0-0 0-5 1 5 12 M Blount 32 3-7 0-2 2-6 4 5 6 G Payton 37 2-10 4-4 1-5 6 0 8 T Allen 20 2-4 3-3 0-3 1 2 7 R Davis 32 4-10 3-6 1-6 3 1 11 A Jefferson 20 4-7 0-0 4-6 1 3 8 M Banks 11 1-4 1-1 0-1 1 1 4 J Welsch 11 2-4 0-0 0-1 1 2 5 K Perkins 14 0-2 3-4 1-4 0 4 3 W Mccarty DNP - COACH'S DECISION D West DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 33-74 27-36 9-46 21 27 97 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.446, FT-.750. 3-Point Goals: 4-12, .333 (P Pierce 0-2, R LaFrentz 2-3, G Payton 0-3, R Davis 0-1, M Banks 1-1, J Welsch 1-2). Team Rebounds: 11. Blocked Shots:5 (M Blount 2, R LaFrentz, P Pierce, K Perkins). Turnovers:15 (R Davis 3, M Blount 3, P Pierce 3, T Allen 2, A Jefferson 2, G Payton, K Perkins). Steals: 8 (R Davis 2, P Pierce 2, G Payton, M Banks, T Allen, R LaFrentz). CHARLOTTE (92) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp G Wallace 22 3-9 1-2 0-3 3 4 8 E Okafor 39 10-19 0-4 7-12 2 4 20 P Brezec 39 7-11 4-7 4-8 1 2 18 J Hart 43 2-9 0-0 0-7 10 6 5 K Rush 34 7-15 1-1 1-4 2 1 17 M Ely 12 0-3 0-2 1-3 0 2 0 K Bogans 20 4-8 3-4 1-5 4 3 12 J Sampson 6 1-2 0-0 0-1 0 0 2 J Kapono 20 3-7 1-2 0-0 0 1 8 B Robinson Jr 5 1-2 0-0 1-2 0 2 2 S Smith DNP - COACH'S DECISION B Knight DNP - LEFT ANKLE SPRAIN _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 38-85 10-22 15-45 22 25 92 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.447, FT-.455. 3-Point Goals: 6-19, .316 (G Wallace 1-3, J Hart 1-3, K Rush 2-7, K Bogans 1-3, J Kapono 1-3). Team Rebounds: 7. Blocked Shots:7 (E Okafor 5, J Kapono, J Sampson). Turnovers:14 (J Hart 3, P Brezec 2, M Ely 2, K Rush 2, E Okafor 2, G Wallace, J Kapono, B Robinson Jr). Steals: 8 (G Wallace 2, P Brezec 2, K Bogans 2, J Kapono, E Okafor). ------------------------------------------- BOSTON 27 24 20 26 - 97 CHARLOTTE 21 26 23 22 - 92 ------------------------------------------- Technical fouls: None. Flagrant fouls: None. A: 11,129. T: 2:14. Officials: Joe Crawford, Monty McCutchen, Ron Olesiak.


Extended Box

BOSTON (97) AT CHARLOTTE (92) BOSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === P PIERCE F 34 10-18 13-16 0 9 9 3 4 2 3 33 R LAFRENTZ F 29 5-8 0-0 0 5 5 1 5 1 0 12 M BLOUNT C 32 3-7 0-2 2 4 6 4 5 0 3 6 G PAYTON G 37 2-10 4-4 1 4 5 6 0 1 1 8 T ALLEN G 20 2-4 3-3 0 3 3 1 2 1 2 7 R DAVIS 32 4-10 3-6 1 5 6 3 1 2 3 11 A JEFFERSON 20 4-7 0-0 4 2 6 1 3 0 2 8 M BANKS 11 1-4 1-1 0 1 1 1 1 1 0 4 J WELSCH 11 2-4 0-0 0 1 1 1 2 0 0 5 K PERKINS 14 0-2 3-4 1 3 4 0 4 0 1 3 W MCCARTY DNP - COACH'S DECISION D WEST DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 33-74 27-36 9 37 46 21 27 8 15 97 (.446) (.750) TEAM REBS: 11 TOTAL TO: 15 (9 PTS) CHARLOTTE REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === G WALLACE F 22 3-9 1-2 0 3 3 3 4 2 1 8 E OKAFOR F 39 10-19 0-4 7 5 12 2 4 1 2 20 P BREZEC C 39 7-11 4-7 4 4 8 1 2 2 2 18 J HART G 43 2-9 0-0 0 7 7 10 6 0 3 5 K RUSH G 34 7-15 1-1 1 3 4 2 1 0 2 17 M ELY 12 0-3 0-2 1 2 3 0 2 0 2 0 K BOGANS 20 4-8 3-4 1 4 5 4 3 2 0 12 J SAMPSON 6 1-2 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 J KAPONO 20 3-7 1-2 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 8 B ROBINSON JR 5 1-2 0-0 1 1 2 0 2 0 1 2 S SMITH DNP - COACH'S DECISION B KNIGHT DNP - LEFT ANKLE SPRAIN TOTALS 240 38-85 10-22 15 30 45 22 25 8 14 92 (.447) (.455) TEAM REBS: 7 TOTAL TO: 15 (22 PTS) BOSTON 27 24 20 26 - 97 CHARLOTTE 21 26 23 22 - 92 BLOCKED SHOTS: BOSTON - M BLOUNT 2, R LAFRENTZ, P PIERCE, K PERKINS. CHARLOTTE - E OKAFOR 5, J KAPONO, J SAMPSON. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: BOSTON 4-12 (.333), P PIERCE 0-2, R LAFRENTZ 2- 3, G PAYTON 0-3, R DAVIS 0-1, M BANKS 1-1, J WELSCH 1-2. CHARLOTTE 6- 19 (.316), G WALLACE 1-3, J HART 1-3, K RUSH 2-7, K BOGANS 1-3, J KAPONO 1- 3. TECHNICAL FOULS: NONE. FLAGRANT FOULS: NONE. OFFICIALS: JOE CRAWFORD, MONTY MCCUTCHEN, RON OLESIAK. A - 11,129. T - 2:14.


Game Story

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Paul Pierce did not allow the Charlotte Bobcats to end their franchise-worst losing streak against his squad. Pierce scored 14 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter as the Boston Celtics ended their nine-game road slide with a 97-92 victory over the Bobcats, who have dropped nine in a row. "It's been a tough road stretch for us," Pierce said. "But this was a game we really needed. This was a must win for us to get our confidence back on the road." Pierce, who added nine rebounds and three assists, did most of his damage at the line in the final period, making 10-of-12 free throws to help the Celtics salvage the finale of a three-game road trip. "Paul played really well and in the second half," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "He got in a great rhythm. In the fourth quarter, we got it to our guy and our guy made plays. They weren't all jump shots or drives; some of them were passes to the other guys. It was a great lesson for us." "I'm our best player and I command so much attention that I can help these other guys out," Pierce said. "They collapse on me and I think I have a great ability to find guys so they can make plays. That's something we talked about and it worked tonight. Even if I don't have the shot, I'm an unselfish enough player that I can find a guy who can make a play." Getting the ball to Pierce down the stretch had become a point of emphasis for Rivers. "I thought Gary (Payton) really took charge in making sure down the stretch that Paul Pierce touched the basketball," Rivers said. "We got him the ball in the right spot and we executed offensively, and that's something we haven't done a very good job of this year. That was good to recognize who your guy was." "That's what Doc wants, so we gotta give him the ball," said Payton, who had eight points and six assists. "That's the way it is. He's a scorer; that's what he does. He gets things done for us." Boston trailed, 82-80, before Pierce sank two free throws with 5:41 remaining that triggered a 7-0 run. He added another pair with 4:58 left that gave the Celtics the lead for good, 84-82. "The guys made an effort to really look to me and I don't think that's been the case in the past," Pierce said. "I floated a lot in the fourth quarter and we weren't realizing what we were trying to get in the fourth. The better teams go to their best player and expect him to make plays and that's what we did tonight." The Celtics made 27-of-36 free throws and the Bobcats just 10-of-22, including 2-of-8 in the fourth quarter. "We shoot free throws every day in practice," Charlotte coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "We keep shooting them. It is a fundamental thing they do in their job. How do we do it? We make them. That's the solution." "Every game it's the same story," said Charlotte center Primoz Brezec, who scored 18 points but made just 4-of-7 free throws. "We can't make the shots. When we need to we can't make free throws. It starts with me. I'd make the first and miss the second. It's just getting ridiculous. I think it's in our heads." Emeka Okafor, who was held scoreless in the first half, finished with 20 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks, but the rookie missed all four of his free throws, including a pair with his team down four points with 16 seconds left. "This was the most selfish basketball game that this team has played," Bickerstaff said. "Everything that happened, we responded personally. We had guys who were open and we were concerned about ourselves as individuals. That won't get it." The loss was the Bobcats' 15th in 16 games. "It was a little bit of everything," Okafor said. "We're going to turn things around pretty soon here. We're getting too close not to. Patience is a virtue and that's being tested right now to the fullest."


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