Celtics stifle Magic's big man, win opener

  • Article by: ASSOCIATED PRESS
  • Updated: May 16, 2010 - 11:45 PM

Battered and bruised for much of the season, a healthy Boston slowed Dwight Howard for most of the game.

Ray Allen
hide

Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen shoots over Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard.

Photo: John Raoux, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

ORLANDO - The hair is a little grayer. The ankles and knees no longer so sturdy. Even with a roster full of aging superstars, the Celtics are still standing tall. Too old to chase a title? Not these days.

Ray Allen scored 25 points, Paul Pierce had 22 and Boston used smothering defense to beat Orlando 92-88 on Sunday in the Eastern Conference finals opener.

Hampered by injuries, the Celtics limped their way through parts of the regular season. All that seems a distant memory now.

"I honestly say we lost ourselves," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "I think we've found ourselves again."

Rasheed Wallace added 13 points as the Celtics built a 20-point lead, then held on late to end Orlando's 14-game winning streak. They held the Magic to 41 percent shooting -- 22 percent from three-point range.

"There were stretches in the season, we know each other so well now, where we were becoming less patient with each other," Allen said. "We were getting on each other a little too much. We can take it, but we respected each other.

Vince Carter had 23 points and Jameer Nelson finished with 20 for Orlando, which cut the lead to two in the final seconds but simply ran out of time, looking rusty after a six-day layoff. Dwight Howard was limited to 13 points and 12 rebounds, nowhere near the dominant force the Magic need to win a title.

Game 2 is Tuesday night in Orlando.

"I don't think it was rusty. Just anxious," Howard said. "We dug ourselves a hole, and it was tough to get back from."

The Celtics outhustled and outmuscled the Magic at every step defensively. They pushed and pulled their way around the paint, slowing Howard for most of the game.

The sweat pouring from their faces, Kevin Garnett and Co. stifled the Magic as well as anyone in these playoffs, holding them to 32 points in the first half.

The Magic lost for the first time since April 2 at San Antonio.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Washington 98 4th Qtr 2:08
New York 85
Oklahoma City 1:30 PM
San Antonio
Cleveland 4:00 PM
Miami
LA Lakers 7:00 PM
Chicago
Golden State 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
DePaul 31 2nd Half
Loyola Marymount 29
Ohio 3:00 PM
Nebraska
Colorado 5:30 PM
Hawaii
George Washington 7:30 PM
Wichita State
Central Mich 48 FINAL
Western Ky 49
Fresno State 6 FINAL
Rice 30
Illinois 12/26/14 12:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Rutgers 12/26/14 3:30 PM
North Carolina
NC State 12/26/14 7:00 PM
UCF
Cincinnati 12/27/14 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Duke 12/27/14 1:10 PM
(15) Arizona State
Miami-Florida 12/27/14 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 12/27/14 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 12/27/14 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite pro sports coach in the Twin Cities?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close
Ray Allen