the republic logo

Green scores 25, Thronton 21 as Celtics hold off Wizards, 101-93

bug
Share/Save/Bookmark

BOSTON — Jeff Green scored 25 points, reserve Marcus Thornton had 21 and the Boston Celtics nearly blew a 25-point third-quarter lead before beating the Washington Wizards 101-93 Sunday in Paul Pierce's return.

Rajon Rondo had a triple-double with 13 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists for the Celtics, who won their third straight after a season-high five-game losing streak.

Rasual Butler scored 14 of his 22 points in the final quarter for the Wizards, who failed to match the franchise's best start since 1968-69.

Pierce, who played for the Celtics for 15 seasons and was a member of their 2008 championship team before being traded to Brooklyn prior to last season, scored 16 points. He signed with Washington as a free agent during the offseason.

John Wall had 17 points, 14 assists and eight rebounds for Washington, which had won its last four.

The Celtics had opened their 25-point lead midway into the third quarter before the Wizards made a furious fourth-quarter rally behind Butler.

Washington, which struggled with its shooting, didn't get into an offensive rhythm until the beginning of the final quarter when Butler nailed three 3-pointers during a 14-3 spree that started the quarter.

PHOTO: Boston Celtics guard Evan Turner, right, tries to drive past Washington Wizards forward Rasual Butler, left, in the second quarter of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014, in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Boston Celtics guard Evan Turner, right, tries to drive past Washington Wizards forward Rasual Butler, left, in the second quarter of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014, in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

Butler's final quarter — when he nailed four 3-pointers — helped the Wizards make it 94-93 with just over a minute to play.

Pierce front-rimmed a 3 before Avery Bradley nailed one from deep in the right corner for Boston with 37 seconds to play, and Green's breakaway layup sealed it.

The Celtics increased it to 63-38 on Rondo's fastbreak layup after After Bradley Beal's basket. The Celtics led 77-59 entering the final quarter.


TIP-INS

Wizards: They were coming off a season-high 119 points in a win over Denver on Friday, but missed 14 of their initial 18 shots and scored only 15 first-quarter points. ... C/F Nene played his second straight after missing five with right plantar fascitis.

Celtics: Coach Brad Stevens likes the test his team will get facing the Wizards on consecutive days. "I think they're a legitimate contender out of the East," he said. "This is great for us to have to have to play 96 minutes in a row against this team." ... G Marcus Smart entered the game in the first quarter after being held out of Friday's game while he recovered from a sprained left ankle that sidelined him for 11 of 12.

UP NEXT

The teams play the second of the home-and-home Monday night in Washington.

Think your friends should see this? Share it with them!

Story copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Feedback, Corrections and Other Requests: AP welcomes feedback and comments from readers. Send an email to info@ap.org and it will be forwarded to the appropriate editor or reporter.


Photo Gallery:
PHOTO: Boston Celtics guard Avery Bradley, left, drives toward the basket as Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal, right, follows in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014, in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Click to view (3 Photos)
We also have more stories about:
(click the phrases to see a list)

Category:

Follow The Republic:

All content copyright ©2014 The Republic, a division of Home News Enterprises unless otherwise noted.
All rights reserved. Privacy policy.