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04/03/2011 - 8:22pm
Sluggish motor: C's escape Pistons

Leading by just one at halftime, the Celtics scored 13 straight points as part of a 15-2 run to end the third quarter and take control and hold of the lowly Pistons, 101-90, Sunday evening at TD Garden. The Celtics shot 64 percent from the field and dominated the glass, outrebounding the Pistons, 37-26. 

In a game that saw the return of Shaquille O'Neal end quickly because of a strained right calf, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce came up huge as Garnett scored a game-high 23 on 10-of-14 shooting while Pierce, who hit all four field goal attempts in the first half, added 22. Rajon Rondo dished out 14 assists as the Celtics attempt to keep up with the Bulls and Heat atop the Eastern Conference. O'Neal played just six minutes off the bench, hitting all three field goal attemps under the basket before leaving with 11:11 remaining in the second quarter. 

Jermaine O'Neal made his first start since Nov. 8 — and just sixth overall this season...

04/03/2011 - 8:17pm
Pedroia on sweep: 'They kicked our ass'

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia made no effort to sugarcoat his team's three-game sweep at the hands of the Rangers. After seeing his team get outscored, 26-11, to start the year, his assessment was characteristically blunt.

"I think we’re all frustrated. We got outplayed. It’s not for lack of talent on our team. We got outpitched, we got outhit, they played better defense than us," Pedroia said. "They kicked our ass, that’s it. We better show up and play better on whatever day we play again. We have to play better than we’ve been playing."

Pedroia suggested that the outcome wasn't shocking, given that the Rangers are the defending American League champs. Even so, he made clear that the Sox' performance over the opening series was not acceptable if the club wants to fulfill its sizable ambitions this year.

"They did everything good. We didn’t," ...

04/03/2011 - 6:53pm
Shaq hobbles off court in return

Just six minutes into his return to the Celtics on Sunday night, Shaquille O'Neal came up lame at midcourt and hobbled off the court. O'Neal struggled to get off the court and was in the tunnel that leads to the court for several minutes on his way back to the locker room. The team is calling it a right calf strain, and he will be evaluated at halftime. Shaq scored six points and initially looked good.

"You’re not going to see a whole bunch of him," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said prior to the game. "Not the best way to do this, obviously, but we don’t have a choice."

O'Neal hadn't been practicing with the team leading up to his first game since early February.

For more Celtics news, visit the team page at weei.com/celtics.


04/03/2011 - 6:26pm
Gonzalez: Sox will still be contenders

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Red Sox newcomer Adrian Gonzalez was quick to dismiss his team's washout of a weekend to start the season. Though the Sox got pounded in losing all three of their contests against the Rangers, Gonzalez suggested that the team would be in the thick of the pennant race at season's end.

"What might turn this team around? To win games," Gonzalez said. "Still got 159, and I'm fully confident that, come September, we'll be either in first place or right in the middle of everything."

The Sox now face a day off before they play against the Indians on Tuesday in Cleveland. Members of the team were of different minds about the value of the layoff. While manager Terry Francona acknowledged that the day without a game would be a bit uncomfortable — "It's not a lot of fun to sit on [the sweep]," he said — Gonzalez believed the team could use the time to its advantage.

"I think a day...

04/03/2011 - 6:11pm
Crawford: 'Hopefully I can relax'

ARLINGTON, Texas -- On a day when the positives were admittedly few for the Red Sox during and after a 5-1 loss that completed the season-opening three-game sweep vs. the Rangers, the team did have some silver linings. Carl Crawford, dropped to seventh in the order by manager Terry Francona, responded to the move by delivering his first two hits and his first RBI as a member of the Red Sox.

The left fielder flicked a singled just inside the third-base line for a single in his first at-bat, and then in the seventh, he lined another single to left-center for the only Sox run of the day. After the game, he suggested that he was hopeful that his first hits for his new club will help him to play to his abilities going forward.

"I didn’t know for sure if it was going to be fair or foul. Lucky enough it stayed fair. Those are the kind of little things that kind of get you going sometimes, so hopefully that’s the start of something,"...

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