Celtics coach Doc Rivers didn't know how his team was going to beat Atlanta on Wednesday night on the second night of a back-to-back and the fourth game in five nights, but he figured if it could just keep the game close, the rest would take care of itself.
"We’ve got great character," Rivers said. "Tough-minded group. You could see, they wanted to win that game so bad."
Rivers went so far as to call this is the toughest team he's coached during his tenure with the Celtics.
"This team has resolve. They do," Rivers said. "On paper, all that stuff, you know who we are. But they figure it out. They like each other and I think that allows us to win games on certain nights that we shouldn’t win. I really believe it.
"I had one in Orlando [that was as tough] but we couldn’t win any games. This team, they’re just tough. I don’t know why. I wish I knew. Once we went...
Rajon Rondo collected his 19th career triple-double and sixth this season while Mickael Pietrus made a stunning comeback from his concussion as the Celtics overcame an eight-point halftime deficit to beat the Hawks, 88-86 in overtime, Wednesday at TD Garden. Rondo finished with 10 points, 10 points and 20 assists, his 19th straight game with double figures in assists. Amid several controversial calls in the final minute, including two fouls on Greg Steimsma and an offensive foul on Paul Pierce, the Celtics forced a turnover with 1.3 seconds remaining to improve to 34-24 and stay three games ahead of the Sixers in the Atlantic Division.
Before fouling out with three minutes left in overtime, Kevin Garnett had a monster game, with 22 points and 12 rebounds in 33 minutes as the Celtics played without Ray Allen, who missed the game nursing his sore left ankle. The Celtics lost another player to fouls, as Steimsma fouled out with 40 seconds left and the...
Cornerback Antuwan Molden, who played in 16 games with the Patriots last season, has agreed to terms on a free-agent contract with the Giants, according to Mike Reiss of ESPN. The 27-year-old Molden finished the season with 36 tackles (25 solo) this past year, with three passes defensed and two interceptions. The 6-foot-1, 198-pound Molden, who spent three seasons with Houston before joining the Patriots, was a third-round pick out of Eastern Kentucky in 2008. For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
Just days after passing his first baseline test following a concussion in late March, Mickael Pietrus was cleared for a return in limited action Wednesday. Doc Rivers said he would be available off the bench and play between five and 10 minutes against the Hawks.
"He's been cleared," Rivers announced less than an hour before tipoff Wednesday. "The sooner we can get him on the floor the better. I didn't expect it."
Pietrus, who told reporters before the game that he would try to make the trip to Toronto for Friday's game, was cleared to return immediately and could take the place of Ray Allen on the Celtics bench. Allen was ruled out by Rivers before Wednesday's game with the Celtics to rest his sore left ankle.
"It was scary," Pietrus said of his March 23 whiplash in the second quarter against the 76ers. "It's been a tough two weeks for me. It's fine now. It's perfect."
Pietrus also told...
TORONTO -- After the Red Sox' 3-1 loss to the Blue Jays Wednesday afternoon at Rogers Centre, dropping the Sox' to 1-5, the players in the visitors' clubhouse talked about opening at Fenway Park on a down-note for a second straight season.
"I think everybody is anxious to go home," said Red Sox DH David Ortiz. "We haven't been home in a while. I guess it's like a reset for everybody. Hopefully we start playing better when we go home."
The Sox' starting pitcher Wednesday, Jon Lester, took no solace in his second straight solid performance (8 innings, 3 runs), suggesting the team simply needs to move on.
"What do you want me to talk about? We're 1-5. We're not playing good right now," the pitcher said. "The games we pitch well, we don't hit. The games we don't pitch well, we hit. We just haven't put it together right now. Nobody in this clubhouse wants to start slow regardless of years past. Like we said last...
We discuss the role Mingo will play for the Patriots defense.
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