Kevin Garnett had 23 points, Paul Pierce scored 20 and Brandon Bass added 19 as the Celtics overcame blowing an 18-point second-half lead to outlast the Jazz, 94-82, Wednesday night at TD Garden. Al Jefferson -- who had a minor arm-swinging run-in with Garnett in the fourth -- finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds. As a result of their third straight win, the Celtics improved to 28-22 and again tied the 76ers for first in the Atlantic Division.
Rajon Rondo finished with 14 assists, becoming the first NBA player with double-digit assist totals in 11 straight games since Steve Nash in 2009.
Both teams were sluggish to start the game and it showed in the shooting percentages, as the Jazz made just 7-of-21 shots but converted all three 3-pointers they attempted to take a 21-18 lead after 12 minutes. The Celtics -- who made just 8-of-22 shots in the opening quarter -- found their shooting range in the second quarter, converting 11-of-20 shots. The highlights of the first half were alley-oop dunks by Ryan Hollins on perfect feeds from Rondo on consecutive possessions.
Trailing 23-18 following a Derrick Favors dunk on the first play of the second quarter, the Celtics went on a 26-6 run to take a 15-point lead. The Celtics outscored Utah 28-14 in the second quarter to take a 46-35 halftime lead.
The Celtics continued on fire in the third quarter, builing their lead up to 18 (61-43) early in the quarter. But Utah closed with a 17-3 spurt to get within four, 64-60. The Jazz held a commanding 42-25 rebounding edge, offsetting Boston's ballhandling advantage. The Celtics committed just six turnovers while Utah had 13.
Alec Burks drove to the basket, made a layup and was fouled. His free throw knotted the game, 66-66, with just over 11 minutes left. But Keyon Dooling answered on the next possession with a 3-pointer and Garnett followed that up on the next possession with a jumper as part of a 7-0 run that made it 73-66.
Jazz guard Gordon Haward provided a spectacular highlight, blocking Dooling and Avery Bradley in the span of 10 seconds on consecutive bids for a layup. He then scrambled for the loose ball and raced up the court with the ball, leading to a pair of Jazz free throws.
The Celtics are off Thursday before traveling to Minnesota for a Friday night game against Kevin Love and the Timberwolves. They return home Sunday to host LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and the Heat at the Garden.
Dale, Michael and Jerry dig into the details of this draft for the Patriots with ESPN's Mike Reiss.
Giardi and Price discuss the Tom Brady appeal getting overturned and Roger Goodell's victory tour. The guys can't believe the victory lap and some of his behavior. The more you listen to him, the more frustrating his behavior becomes.
Giardi and Price break down how the teams in the AFC East altered their futures after the NFL Draft weekend.
Jeff Goodman calls Mike and Rob to drop a ton of knowledge on the upcoming NBA Draft and some of the names available. Sorry fans - he doesn't see Kevin Durant or any big-named free agents coming to Boston and thinks they'll end up making the third pick this season. He also says that there is NO WAY he would trade next year's Brooklyn pick because the draft will be very deep. He discusses the chances of trading with Philly for Okafor, why he like Kris Dunn so much and much more.
Brad Stevens makes his first appearance on the Dale and Holley with Thornton show. We discuss the Atlanta series and what went wrong, and where the Celtics go from here.
Ian Thomsen of NBA.com joined Sam Packard and Jared Weiss to discuss the next moves for Danny Ainge and the Boston Celtics with the NBA Draft Lottery rapidly approaching. They discussed the crazy ending to Game 2 of Thunder vs Spurs and picked the player they would build their pretend new franchise around.
Danny Picard recaps the Red Sox 5-3 win over the Blue Jays.
Who is to blame for the Red Sox 10-9 loss to the Blue Jays? Danny points the finger.
Tim talks with Red Sox manager John Farrell before the Red Sox game against the Blue Jays. John talks about Clay Buchholz move to the bullpen and adjustments he expects him to have to make going from the starter to the bullpen.
DJ and Pete continue to assess the season that was for the Bruins and look toward the future for the franchise and how they can improve.
DJ and Pete are together for the final Sunday Skate of the season. They get into their overall thoughts on the season, the Bruins keeping Claude Julien on as head coach and the end-of-season press conferences last week. They discuss the rebuild process, what the Bruins need and how they can obtain it. Plenty of callers have their own theories and opinions on all of these topics as well.
Butch is joined by two-thirds of the Sunday Skate show in DJ and Pete. The guys discuss the problems with Bruins including leadership and grit, who should stay and who should go and if Claude is to blame.
Lucy's parting shot after not taking the job is to attack Dino for how he treats producers.
Bernie Sanders wants to debate Trump.
Yaz was on hand at Fenway last night to honor the '86 team and Wade Boggs' number retirement.
Laroy Streat keeps setting fire to the airways and talks people singing his Freestyle Fridays to him when they see him on the street! Catch our guy every friday via final drive! He's must listen radio!
We end the week with the best in sound Laroy Streat continues to set fire to the airways with his music.
The guys talk Red Sox pitching and the problems that could arise with Buchholz struggles.
Jerry is joined by Graig Murphy to talk stand up comedy. Until Graig pretty much hijacks the podcast to tell his side of the "Big Show Unfiltered" story.
Ben and Russ preview the Champions League Final between Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid. Who we want to win, who we think will win, and why. We also talk about our wishes for the USMNT.
The Dennis and Callahan malcontent is joined by former WEEI personality Pete Sheppard to talk about his past involvement with the station and his current gig in New Hampshire. You'll be glad to hear Pete hasn't changed one bit.