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05/06/2012 - 8:28pm
No doubt: Rondo, Pierce lift C's past Hawks

Paul Pierce hit 10 of his 13 shots on the night, including 4-of-6 from 3-point range, and finished with 24 points in 18 minutes while Rajon Rondo added 20 points and 16 assists as the Celtics blew out the Hawks, 101-79, Sunday night in Game 4 at TD Garden. Kevin Garnett added 13 points while Ray Allen added 12 off the bench for the Celtics, who take a commanding 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. The series shifts back to Atlanta, where the Celtics can clinch the series Tuesday night in Game 5. 

The Celtics appeared to catch a big break, as Pierce injured his left knee in the second quarter but returned for the third quarter. With the game not in question, the Celtics were able to rest their superstar, who rescued them in Game 2 in Atlanta. 

Pierce and Rondo led a first-half assault on the Hawks. Pierce hit five of his seven shots in the opening quarter and led the Celtics with 10 points. Rondo had...

05/06/2012 - 8:28pm
Bobby V: No plans to change Buchholz role

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said after Sunday's 9-6, 17-inning loss that he was concerned about the performance of starter Clay Buchholz but that he has no immediate plans for a role change for the right-hander.

"Clay’s performance was not what he wanted it to be for sure and not what I wanted it to be. He left a lot of pitches in a real hittable zone and gave up a lot of hard-hit balls," Valentine said. "There were a lot of pitchers used today. He was one of them and I’ve got to figure out what to do, and how to get by with all these guys who really did a yeomen’s job today. I have no plans to change him at this time."

Buchholz has allowed five or more earned runs in all six of his starts this year, the longest such streak by a Red Sox starter since Red Ruffing endured an eight-game stretch in 1925.

For his part, Buchholz said that he is healthy and dismissed the idea that a blister issue he's...

05/06/2012 - 8:22pm
Allen says surgery may not be needed

On April 28, Ray Allen said he would have surgery following the conclusion of the Celtics playoff run for the bone spurs in his right ankle. At the time, Allen went as far to say that he would get the surgery “tomorrow” if it were not for the playoffs starting. But before Game 4 Sunday night, Allen rescinded his statements, instead hinting that the joints in his ankle causing the pain could heal the ailment naturally rendering surgery unnecessary.

“I know I said [I needed surgery] a couple weeks ago,” Allen said. “I believe that just from pictures. But based on how I feel now, and where my body is, I'll revisit getting X-Rays and a MRI when [the season] is over with and make an assessment then. If I continue this track I'm on, [I'm] getting better, then I don't need to have surgery, if it's not necessary.”

Allen returned to the lineup for the first time since April 10 during Game 3 Friday night. He...

05/06/2012 - 6:46pm
Sox' hole deepens in 17-inning loss to O's

It was one of their most spirited efforts of the year, and yet it ended with the familiar whiff of defeat. The Red Sox suffered a 9-6 loss in 17 innings when Adam Jones smashed a three-run homer into the Monster seats against Red Sox outfielder-turned-pinch runner-turned reliever Darnell McDonald, in the game because his team had exhausted its bullpen.

The loss was the fifth straight for the Sox, who have now lost 10 of their last 11 home games. In losing all three contests to the Orioles, the Sox got swept at home by the O’s for the first time since 1994.

Though he was long gone by the time the game was decided, Clay Buchholz played an immense role in the shape of the game. He left the team in an early 5-0 hole, getting shelled for five runs on seven hits and four walks while punching out four in 3 2/3 innings, his shortest outing of the year.

Buchholz gave up three homers and has now allowed 10 in 32 2/3 innings this year, matching...

05/06/2012 - 6:09pm
Horford active and will play for Hawks

After missing the final 55 regular season games and the first three games of the series against the Celtics, center Al Horford is active and making his return to action in Game 4 Sunday night. 

Horford, a native of the Dominican Republic and friend of Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, tore his left pectoral muscle in early January battling for a rebound with Indiana's Roy Hibbert. He was activated by Hawks coach Larry Drew and made available off the bench.

Horford's return, along with the return of starter Josh Smith, provides a front court challenge for the Celtics, who were outscored 28-6 in the paint in the first half Friday night. 

For more, visit the Celtics team page at weei.com/celtics and the Green Street blog.


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