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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- BOSTON 25 18 19 24 86 MIAMI 35 23 31 23 112 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: BOS - ANTOINE WALKER 26, PAUL PIERCE 20, KENNY ANDERSON 14 MIA - TIM HARDAWAY 24, BRIAN GRANT 16, EDDIE JONES 15

HIGH REBOUND: BOS - ANTOINE WALKER 11, TWO PLAYERS WITH 7 MIA - BRIAN GRANT 13, ANTHONY MASON 8

HIGH ASSISTS: BOS - ANTOINE WALKER 2, KENNY ANDERSON 2 MIA - TIM HARDAWAY 10, ANTHONY MASON 6

ATT: 16,122


Extended Box

BOSTON (86) AT MIAMI (112)

BOSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

PIERCE F 38 9-17 2-2 2 3 5 1 3 1 5 20 WALKER F 38 12-24 0-0 2 9 11 2 1 0 2 26 BLOUNT C 22 2-4 0-0 2 1 3 1 2 2 0 4 ANDERSON G 29 6-10 0-0 1 1 2 2 5 0 1 14 STITH G 22 2-4 0-0 1 1 2 1 0 0 0 5 E WILLIAMS 14 3-6 0-0 2 0 2 1 0 1 1 6 CARR 12 0-3 2-4 1 2 3 0 2 0 0 2 POTAPENKO 24 1-6 1-2 3 4 7 1 1 0 1 3 BROWN 19 0-3 0-0 0 1 1 0 2 2 5 0 MCCARTY 12 2-4 0-0 2 5 7 0 1 0 0 4 GRIFFIN 10 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 2

TOTALS 240 38-84 5-8 16 27 43 10 18 6 16 86 (.452) (.625) TEAM REBS: 5 TOTAL TO: 20(25 PTS)

MIAMI REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

BOWEN F 33 4-9 0-0 0 0 0 5 2 0 1 11 MASON F 37 5-8 0-0 1 7 8 6 3 0 1 10 GRANT C 30 7-10 2-3 3 10 13 0 3 1 1 16 HARDAWAY G 29 9-14 2-3 0 2 2 10 1 2 1 24 JONES G 25 6-10 2-2 1 0 1 2 3 1 2 15 MAJERLE 19 3-3 0-0 0 1 1 2 0 1 0 8 CARTER 19 1-5 3-4 0 1 1 3 0 2 2 5 GREEN 20 4-7 4-4 1 3 4 0 2 1 0 12 CEBALLOS 15 3-6 2-2 0 1 1 0 2 1 1 9 FULLER 9 0-3 0-0 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 0 HOUSE 4 1-2 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 CAUSWELL DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 43-77 15-18 6 27 33 28 17 9 10 112 (.558) (.833) TEAM REBS: 5 TOTAL TO: 11(13 PTS)

BOSTON 25 18 19 24 - 86 MIAMI 35 23 31 23 - 112

BLOCKED SHOTS: BOSTON - BLOUNT 3, PIERCE. MIAMI - BOWEN 2, GRANT 2, JONES, GREEN. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: BOSTON 5-8 (.625), PIERCE 0-1, WALKER 2-3, ANDERSON 2-2, STITH 1-1, E WILLIAMS 0-1. MIAMI 11-18 (.611), BOWEN 3-6, HARDAWAY 4-6, JONES 1-2, MAJERLE 2-2, CARTER 0-1, CEBALLOS 1-1. TECHNICALS: BOSTON - BLOUNT, MIAMI - GRANT. OFFICIALS: JOE CRAWFORD, SCOTT FOSTER, LEROY RICHARDSON. A - 16,122. T - 1:58.


Box Score

BOSTON (86) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Pierce 38 9-17 2-2 2-5 1 3 20 Walker 38 12-24 0-0 2-11 2 1 26 Blount 22 2-4 0-0 2-3 1 2 4 Anderson 29 6-10 0-0 1-2 2 5 14 Stith 22 2-4 0-0 1-2 1 0 5 E Williams 14 3-6 0-0 2-2 1 0 6 Carr 12 0-3 2-4 1-3 0 2 2 Potapenko 24 1-6 1-2 3-7 1 1 3 Brown 19 0-3 0-0 0-1 0 2 0 Mccarty 12 2-4 0-0 2-7 0 1 4 Griffin 10 1-3 0-0 0-0 1 1 2 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 38-84 5-8 16-43 10 18 86 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.452, FT-.625. 3-Point Goals: 5-8, .625 (Pierce 0-1, Walker 2-3, Anderson 2-2, Stith 1-1, E Williams 0-1). Team rebounds: 5. Blocked shots: 4 (Blount 3, Pierce). Turnovers: 20 (Brown 5, Pierce 5, Walker 2, Anderson, E Williams, Griffin, Potapenko). Steals: 6 (Blount 2, Brown 2, E Williams, Pierce).

MIAMI (112) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Bowen 33 4-9 0-0 0-0 5 2 11 Mason 37 5-8 0-0 1-8 6 3 10 Grant 30 7-10 2-3 3-13 0 3 16 Hardaway 29 9-14 2-3 0-2 10 1 24 Jones 25 6-10 2-2 1-1 2 3 15 Majerle 19 3-3 0-0 0-1 2 0 8 Carter 19 1-5 3-4 0-1 3 0 5 Green 20 4-7 4-4 1-4 0 2 12 Ceballos 15 3-6 2-2 0-1 0 2 9 Fuller 9 0-3 0-0 0-1 0 1 0 House 4 1-2 0-0 0-1 0 0 2 Causwell DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 43-77 15-18 6-33 28 17 112 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.558, FT-.833. 3-Point Goals: 11-18, .611 (Bowen 3-6, Hardaway 4-6, Jones 1-2, Majerle 2-2, Carter 0-1, Ceballos 1-1). Team rebounds: 5. Blocked shots: 6 (Bowen 2, Grant 2, Jones, Green). Turnovers: 11 (Carter 2, Jones 2, Bowen, Ceballos, Fuller, Grant, Hardaway, Mason). Steals: 9 (Carter 2, Hardaway 2, Ceballos, Grant, Green, Jones, Majerle). ____________________________________________ Boston 25 18 19 24 - 86 Miami 35 23 31 23 - 112 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Boston 1 (Blount, 7:04 3rd). Miami 1 (Grant, 7:04 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 16,122. T: 1:58. Officials: Joe Crawford, Scott Foster, Leroy Richardson.


Game Story

MIAMI (Ticker) -- The Boston Celtics may be driving coach Rick Pitino to the breaking point.

Earlier this season, Pitino threatened to resign if his club did not improve its defense. But things have not gotten any better as the Celtics suffered another embarrassing loss, a 112-86 blowout to the Miami Heat.

After the game, Boston's 11th loss in 14 contests, Pitino said he was taking a day off to think things through and spend some time with his wife.

"I said all along that come January, I will make a decision," Pitino explained. "What I was looking for was defensive improvement and obviously, by the way the Heat played, you can see it is not there."

"I have not resigned, but I am going to take a day off tomorrow. It has been awhile since I remember having a day off. My wife is coming down and we are going to spend the day together and I am going to do a little thinking. It is safe to say I will have a decision after the day off."

Miami coach Pat Riley said he does not want to see Pitino leave the NBA but is aware of the possibility.

"I recommended him highly for the Kentucky job when he got that," Riley said. "I thought he was the best man for the job and I thought he was the best man for the job at Boston. Regardless of what happens or how it is covered, if he decides to leave, there is not a coach in the NBA that cares more or puts more into the game than he does."

But Pitino could not have liked anything he saw from the Celtics on Saturday.

Tim Hardaway scored 24 points for the Heat, who matched their most lopsided win of the season and posted a season high in points.

"The Heat played a spectacular game," Pitino said. "Their shooting was spectacular, especially from the 3-point line. The Heat put on a clinic tonight."

Miami shot a season-best 56 percent (43-of-77) from the field, making 11 3-pointers, which equaled a season high.

The Heat's previous high for points came in a 110-102 overtime victory at Detroit on December 30. Miami opened the season with a 105-79 thumping of Orlando.

"We came in and made plays, made things happen on the offensive end and played good defense," Hardaway said. "We rebounded the ball well and got the ball out for easy buckets."

While Boston is in turmoil, Miami is making a move in the Eastern Conference, winning seven of its last eight to pull within two games of second-place New York in the Atlantic Division.

"We played about as well as we could play throughout the course of the game," Riley said. "We maintained a level of intensity and focus from a defensive standpoint to complete the win."

The Heat entered the contest averaging 87.3 points, the fourth-lowest total in the NBA. But they surpassed that mark by the end of the third quarter, taking an 89-62 lead into the final period.

Hardaway was 9-of-14 from the field, including 4-of-6 from 3-point range.

"I was just aggressive, enjoying the game and playing hard," he said. "I've been doing that for the past seven or eight ballgames. I just haven't made the shots like I did tonight."

Six players reached double figures for Miami, including all five starters. Brian Grant added 16 points and 13 rebounds while Eddie Jones contributed 15 points.

From the start, Boston played little defense. The Heat shot 67 percent (14-of-21) in the first period to open a 35-25 lead. Miami stretched the advantage to 58-43 at halftime.

Antoine Walker scored 26 points and Paul Pierce added 24 for the Celtics, but Pierce said the uncertainly surrouding Pitino is a distraction.

"It is difficult (to stay focused)," he added. "What we have to do as individuals is come to practice every day, work hard and try to give 110 percent. I want him to be happy and have peace of mind. I know it's been tough for him the last couple of weeks and the last couple of years."

After getting booed off the court following Friday's 100-88 home loss to Golden State, the Celtics might have preferred to be on the road. But they got no sympathy from the Heat.

Miami never trailed, jumping to a 9-2 lead 2 1/2 minutes into the contest. Boston stayed close for most of the opening period but a late 9-2 spurt gave Miami a 10-point lead and it was all downhill from there for the Celtics.

Boston committed 20 turnovers that Miami converted into 25 points, while the Heat turned over the ball just 11 times.

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