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NBA  FINAL            1ST  2ND  3RD  4TH  TOTAL
                      ---  ---  ---  ---  -----
     BOSTON           17   29   22   24    92   
     HOUSTON          29   21   19   32    101     FINAL

HIGH SCORERS:   BOS - PAUL PIERCE 24, ANTOINE WALKER 23, J.R. 
                      BREMER 22
                HOU - STEVE FRANCIS 26, CUTTINO MOBLEY 24, 
                      JAMES POSEY 12

HIGH REBOUND:   BOS - TONY BATTIE 8, ANTOINE WALKER 6, PAUL 
                      PIERCE 5
                HOU - JAMES POSEY 9, FOUR PLAYERS WITH 6

HIGH ASSISTS:   BOS - J.R. BREMER 6, PAUL PIERCE 4, THREE 
                      PLAYERS WITH 3
                HOU - STEVE FRANCIS 9, CUTTINO MOBLEY 6, TWO 
                      PLAYERS WITH 3

         ATT:   10,721

Box Score

BOSTON (92) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp A Walker 41 9-22 1-2 3-6 3 4 23 E Williams 29 1-6 2-4 3-4 3 1 5 T Battie 31 5-7 0-0 2-8 3 3 10 J Bremer 38 8-13 2-2 0-1 6 3 22 P Pierce 38 10-21 1-1 1-5 4 3 24 S Williams 15 0-4 0-0 0-1 2 1 0 K Brown 15 1-7 0-0 2-4 0 0 2 V Baker 16 0-3 0-0 1-3 1 2 0 W Mccarty 17 2-6 0-0 0-1 2 2 6 T Delk DNP - SPRAINED LEFT ANKLE B Sundov DNP - COACH'S DECISION M Moore DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 36-89 6-9 12-33 24 19 92 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.404, FT-.667. 3-Point Goals: 14-33, .424 (A Walker 4-7, E Williams 1-3, T Battie 0-1, J Bremer 4-6, P Pierce 3-4, S Williams 0-3, K Brown 0-4, W Mccarty 2-5). Team Rebounds: 9. Blocked Shots:2 (T Battie, P Pierce). Turnovers:10 (P Pierce 3, S Williams 2, J Bremer 2, E Williams, V Baker, T Battie). Steals: 8 (J Bremer 2, E Williams, V Baker, W Mccarty, T Battie, S Williams, K Brown). HOUSTON (101) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp E Griffin 28 3-9 2-2 0-4 1 1 9 J Posey 28 4-8 2-2 0-9 1 4 12 Y Ming 32 4-7 2-2 0-6 2 3 10 S Francis 42 8-15 9-10 0-5 9 2 26 C Mobley 45 9-18 4-4 1-6 6 2 24 J Hawkins 20 3-6 0-0 0-2 3 1 7 K Cato 16 3-3 1-2 1-6 0 1 7 T Morris 20 3-6 0-0 3-6 0 1 6 M Norris 9 0-2 0-0 0-1 3 0 0 M Taylor DNP - ACHILLES TENDINITIS J Collier DNP - COACH'S DECISION B Nachbar DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 37-74 20-22 5-45 25 15 101 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.500, FT-.909. 3-Point Goals: 7-17, .412 (E Griffin 1-4, J Posey 2-5, S Francis 1-2, C Mobley 2-5, J Hawkins 1-1). Team Rebounds: 8. Blocked Shots:8 (Y Ming 5, E Griffin 2, S Francis). Turnovers:13 (C Mobley 5, S Francis 3, J Hawkins 2, J Posey, T Morris, E Griffin). Steals: 7 (C Mobley 3, Y Ming 2, M Norris, S Francis). ------------------------------------------- BOSTON 17 29 22 24 - 92 HOUSTON 29 21 19 32 - 101 ------------------------------------------- Technical fouls: None. Flagrant fouls: None. A: 10,721. T: 2:05. Officials: Gary Zielinski, Mark Wunderlich, Tony Brothers.


Extended Box

BOSTON (92) AT HOUSTON (101) BOSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === A WALKER F 41 9-22 1-2 3 3 6 3 4 0 0 23 E WILLIAMS F 29 1-6 2-4 3 1 4 3 1 1 1 5 T BATTIE C 31 5-7 0-0 2 6 8 3 3 1 1 10 J BREMER G 38 8-13 2-2 0 1 1 6 3 2 2 22 P PIERCE G 38 10-21 1-1 1 4 5 4 3 0 3 24 S WILLIAMS 15 0-4 0-0 0 1 1 2 1 1 2 0 K BROWN 15 1-7 0-0 2 2 4 0 0 1 0 2 V BAKER 16 0-3 0-0 1 2 3 1 2 1 1 0 W MCCARTY 17 2-6 0-0 0 1 1 2 2 1 0 6 T DELK DNP - SPRAINED LEFT ANKLE B SUNDOV DNP - COACH'S DECISION M MOORE DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 36-89 6-9 12 21 33 24 19 8 10 92 (.404) (.667) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 10 (8 PTS) HOUSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === E GRIFFIN F 28 3-9 2-2 0 4 4 1 1 0 1 9 J POSEY F 28 4-8 2-2 0 9 9 1 4 0 1 12 Y MING C 32 4-7 2-2 0 6 6 2 3 2 0 10 S FRANCIS G 42 8-15 9-10 0 5 5 9 2 1 3 26 C MOBLEY G 45 9-18 4-4 1 5 6 6 2 3 5 24 J HAWKINS 20 3-6 0-0 0 2 2 3 1 0 2 7 K CATO 16 3-3 1-2 1 5 6 0 1 0 0 7 T MORRIS 20 3-6 0-0 3 3 6 0 1 0 1 6 M NORRIS 9 0-2 0-0 0 1 1 3 0 1 0 0 M TAYLOR DNP - ACHILLES TENDINITIS J COLLIER DNP - COACH'S DECISION B NACHBAR DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 37-74 20-22 5 40 45 25 15 7 13 101 (.500) (.909) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 13 (12 PTS) BOSTON 17 29 22 24 - 92 HOUSTON 29 21 19 32 - 101 BLOCKED SHOTS: BOSTON - T BATTIE, P PIERCE. HOUSTON - Y MING 5, E GRIFFIN 2, S FRANCIS. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: BOSTON 14-33 (.424), A WALKER 4-7, E WILLIAMS 1- 3, T BATTIE 0-1, J BREMER 4-6, P PIERCE 3-4, S WILLIAMS 0-3, K BROWN 0- 4, W MCCARTY 2-5. HOUSTON 7-17 (.412), E GRIFFIN 1-4, J POSEY 2-5, S FRANCIS 1-2, C MOBLEY 2-5, J HAWKINS 1-1. TECHNICAL FOULS: NONE. FLAGRANT FOULS: NONE. OFFICIALS: GARY ZIELINSKI, MARK WUNDERLICH, TONY BROTHERS. A - 10,721. T - 2:05.


Game Story

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Steve Francis collected 26 points and nine assists and Cuttino Mobley scored 24 points as the Houston Rockets defeated the struggling Boston Celtics, 101-92, for their fourth win in five games. James Posey celebrated his 26th birthday with 12 points and nine rebounds in his first start for Houston, which put Glen Rice on the injured list earlier in the day. "My wind was a little suspect out there, I just try to provide a little energy," said Pose, who was acquired from Denver on December 18. "I'm trying to find my niche." Rookie sensation Yao Ming, who suffered a knee injury in the first quarter of Saturday's win in Denver, chipped in 10 points, including a three-point play with 3:46 left in the third quarter that gave the Rockets the lead for good, 64-61. Yao's basket interrupted an 11-0 run by the Celtics, who lost for the fifth time in six games. Boston stayed close, pulling within 89-87 on a layup by Antoine Walker with 2:25 left. But Francis made a pair of free throws to ignite a 10-3 burst that iced the victory. "We're good when we get the ball up the court before we have to set up," Francis said. "I haven't been scoring 30, but I've been consistent. It was a see-saw match." Paul Pierce scored 24 points and rookie J.R. Bremer added a season-high 22 in his first start for Boston, which has dropped six straight in Houston. "I'm very pleased with my play," Bremer said. "Coach told me that I was going to play more and I came out aggressively and played hard." The Celtics took their only lead, 4-2, before falling behind by as many as 13 points in the opening quarter. They trailed by 15 in the second period before rallying within 50-46 at the break. Pierce and Bremer hit 3-pointers to close the half for the Celtics. Boston shot just 40 percent (36-of-89) from the field but stayed in it with long-range shooting. The Celtics were 14-of-33 (42 percent) from the arc. "They're so tough to play, everybody can shoot the ball," Mobley said. "We had our fun and jacked up some shots. That's the thing about Yao (being double-teamed) - when you have a guy who attracts so much attention down there, it helps us out." Walker finished with 23 points, sinking 4-of-7 from 3-point range but just 9-of-22 overall. "This is a down point for us," Walker said. "We have to pick it up and get some wins before the All-Star break." Houston regained its double-digit lead in the third quarter when Posey hit a 3-pointer for a 61-50 advantage with 6:07 to go. But Bremer hit a bucket and the Celtics nailed a trio of 3-pointers, including one by Walker that tied it with 4:09 remaining. After Yao answered, Boston was unable to pull even but remained within four points for more than 14 minutes until Mobley's bucket made it 93-88 with 1:21 to play. Mobley had 10 points in the final period. Yao was 4-of-7 from the field and blocked five shots as the Rockets shot 50 percent (37-of-74) and held a 45-33 rebounding advantage. "We played good enough to win, but the Rockets hit some tough shots, and that was the ballgame," Pierce said. "Last year, these are games we would have won."


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