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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- MIAMI 12 21 25 18 76 BOSTON 27 23 20 18 88 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: MIA - EDDIE JONES 20, BRIAN GRANT 14, TIM HARDAWAY 11 BOS - PAUL PIERCE 28, ANTOINE WALKER 27, BRYANT STITH 7

HIGH REBOUND: MIA - EDDIE JONES 8, BRIAN GRANT 8 BOS - VITALY POTAPENKO 10, ANTOINE WALKER 7

HIGH ASSISTS: MIA - ANTHONY MASON 4, ANTHONY CARTER 4 BOS - KENNY ANDERSON 5, ANTOINE WALKER 4

ATT: 12,758


Extended Box

MIAMI (76) AT BOSTON (88)

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

BOWEN F 29 2-7 3-7 2 4 6 1 6 1 1 8 MASON F 37 2-4 3-4 4 3 7 4 4 0 3 7 GRANT C 38 5-13 4-4 3 5 8 0 3 0 5 14 HARDAWAY G 31 4-14 1-1 0 2 2 2 1 0 0 11 JONES G 34 6-16 6-6 1 7 8 3 3 3 1 20 MAJERLE 22 1-5 0-0 0 1 1 3 2 0 0 3 CEBALLOS 8 2-4 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 3 4 CARTER 17 2-4 0-0 0 1 1 4 2 0 2 4 GREEN 24 2-4 1-1 0 0 0 0 3 1 1 5 CAUSWELL DNP - COACH'S DECISION FULLER DNP - COACH'S DECISION HOUSE DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 26-71 18-23 10 24 34 17 24 5 16 76 (.366) (.783) TEAM REBS: 10 TOTAL TO: 17(21 PTS)

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

PIERCE F 43 10-22 7-9 0 2 2 2 4 4 1 28 WALKER F 44 11-21 3-3 2 5 7 4 4 2 5 27 BLOUNT C 15 2-2 0-0 1 4 5 1 4 1 1 4 ANDERSON G 15 2-5 0-0 2 3 5 5 0 0 0 4 STITH G 32 2-6 2-3 0 2 2 1 4 1 2 7 POTAPENKO 32 2-4 2-2 5 5 10 1 2 0 2 6 E WILLIAMS 22 1-3 2-2 0 3 3 3 1 0 3 4 BROWN 30 1-4 2-4 1 3 4 3 2 0 1 4 MOISO 4 1-3 0-0 1 1 2 0 1 0 1 2 PALACIO 3 1-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 CARR DNP - COACH'S DECISION MCCARTY DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 33-71 18-23 12 28 40 20 22 9 16 88 (.465) (.783) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 16(19 PTS)

MIAMI 12 21 25 18 - 76 BOSTON 27 23 20 18 - 88

BLOCKED SHOTS: MIAMI - MASON, CEBALLOS. BOSTON - BLOUNT 2, POTAPENKO. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: MIAMI 6-23 (.261), BOWEN 1-4, HARDAWAY 2-7, JONES 2-7, MAJERLE 1-4, CEBALLOS 0-1. BOSTON 4-14 (.286), PIERCE 1-3, WALKER 2-5, ANDERSON 0-1, STITH 1-4, E WILLIAMS 0-1. TECHNICALS: MIAMI - ILLEGAL DEFENSE, HEAD COACH RILEY, BOSTON - ILLEGAL DEFENSE. OFFICIALS: HUE HOLLINS, TED BERNHARDT, HANK ARMSTRONG. A - 12,758. T - 2:18.


Box Score

MIAMI (76) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Bowen 29 2-7 3-7 2-6 1 6 8 Mason 37 2-4 3-4 4-7 4 4 7 Grant 38 5-13 4-4 3-8 0 3 14 Hardaway 31 4-14 1-1 0-2 2 1 11 Jones 34 6-16 6-6 1-8 3 3 20 Majerle 22 1-5 0-0 0-1 3 2 3 Ceballos 8 2-4 0-0 0-1 0 0 4 Carter 17 2-4 0-0 0-1 4 2 4 Green 24 2-4 1-1 0-0 0 3 5 Causwell DNP - coach's decision Fuller DNP - coach's decision House DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 26-71 18-23 10-34 17 24 76 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.366, FT-.783. 3-Point Goals: 6-23, .261 (Bowen 1-4, Hardaway 2-7, Jones 2-7, Majerle 1-4, Ceballos 0-1). Team rebounds: 10. Blocked shots: 2 (Mason, Ceballos). Turnovers: 17 (Grant 5, Ceballos 3, Mason 3, Carter 2, Bowen, Green, Jones). Steals: 5 (Jones 3, Bowen, Green).

BOSTON (88) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Pierce 43 10-22 7-9 0-2 2 4 28 Walker 44 11-21 3-3 2-7 4 4 27 Blount 15 2-2 0-0 1-5 1 4 4 Anderson 15 2-5 0-0 2-5 5 0 4 Stith 32 2-6 2-3 0-2 1 4 7 Potapenko 32 2-4 2-2 5-10 1 2 6 E Williams 22 1-3 2-2 0-3 3 1 4 Brown 30 1-4 2-4 1-4 3 2 4 Moiso 4 1-3 0-0 1-2 0 1 2 Palacio 3 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 2 Carr DNP - coach's decision Mccarty DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 33-71 18-23 12-40 20 22 88 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.465, FT-.783. 3-Point Goals: 4-14, .286 (Pierce 1-3, Walker 2-5, Anderson 0-1, Stith 1-4, E Williams 0-1). Team rebounds: 9. Blocked shots: 3 (Blount 2, Potapenko). Turnovers: 16 (Walker 5, E Williams 3, Potapenko 2, Stith 2, Blount, Brown, Moiso, Pierce). Steals: 9 (Pierce 4, Walker 2, Blount, Palacio, Stith). ____________________________________________ Miami 12 21 25 18 - 76 Boston 27 23 20 18 - 88 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Miami 2 (Illegal Defense, 1:31 2nd; Head Coach Riley, 3:24 3rd). Boston 1 (Illegal Defense, 11:47 3rd). Flagrant fouls: Miami 1 (Majerle, 0:34 2nd). A: 12,758. T: 2:18. Officials: Hue Hollins, Ted Bernhardt, Hank Armstrong.


Game Story

BOSTON (Ticker) -- The Boston Celtics gave Jim O'Brien his first victory with the kind of defensive effort that was sorely lacking under the Rick Pitino regime.

Paul Pierce scored 28 points and Antoine Walker added 27 as the Celtics snapped a season-high six-game losing streak with an 88-76 victory over the Miami Heat.

Ironically, it was a 112-86 drubbing at Miami on Saturday that led to the resignation of Pitino, something he had threatened earlier in the season if the Celtics did not improve their defense.

Boston began the O'Brien era on Monday with a 98-90 setback to Portland.

"I'm thrilled for the team and frankly, I'm very happy for myself and the coaching staff," said O'Brien, an assistant under Pitino. "But we aren't going to get too high after victories or too low after defeats."

"He's (O'Brien) letting us know that we are a lot better than our record (13-23) indicates," Walker added. "He's always positive and it makes us feel good and it showed tonight."

The Celtics nearly squandered a 19-point lead early in the third quarter as Miami closed to 74-71 on Eddie Jones' layup with 5:14 remaining in the final period. But Boston put it away with a 9-2 spurt, opening an 83-73 lead on Bryant Stith's jumper with 1:59 to play.

It marked just the second time this season the Celtics held an opponent under 80 points. Boston's season low for points allowed came in an 87-72 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on November 28.

Boston outrebounded Miami, 40-34, and held a 36-18 edge in points in the paint.

"We didn't let them get to the rim very much tonight," O'Brien said. "Guys were blocking the lanes very well, sacrificing their bodies, and that's why we won the game tonight."

Jones scored 20 points and Brian Grant added 14 for Miami, which lost for just the second time in its last 10 contests.

The Heat were content to take mostly jumpers but shot just 37 percent (26-of-71), including 6-of-23 from 3-point range.

"They were giving us threes all game," said Miami guard Tim Hardaway, who contributed 12 points. "That's what the story was. If we made 3-pointers the way we did in Miami, that would have opened up the inside for our big guys."

In Saturday's win, Miami shot 56 percent and matched a season high with 11 3-pointers. The Celtics were a different team on Wednesday, jumping to a 27-12 lead after the first quarter.

Boston took a 50-33 halftime lead and stretched its advantage to 55-36 on Mark Blount's tip-in with 10:04 left in the third period.

Miami responded with a 17-4 spurt, closing to 59-53 on Hardaway's 3-pointer with 4:23 left in the third. The Celtics scored the next five points, opening a 66-53 lead on Walker's layup with 2:46 left in the period.

After the Heat pulled within three in the fourth quarter, Pierce steadied the ship for the Celtics, hitting two foul shots and a jumper to make it 78-71 with 4:15 to play.

Miami answered on Anthony Mason's follow shot but the Celtics got the lead back to double figures on Walker's 15-footer and Stith's 3-pointer.

Boston guard Kenny Anderson sprained his right ankle in the second period and did not return. O'Brien said he does not expect Anderson to play in Friday's contest against Toronto.

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