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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Celtics Beat Mavericks In The Worst Double Overtime Game In NBA History

Maybe it's because they blew a 14-point lead (68-54) from the third quarter or perhaps it doesn't feel so great since the Celtics squandered not one but two shots to win at the end of regulation and the first overtime. Still, I guess we should be thankful that Boston (12-9, 8-4 home) found a way to hold off Dallas (11-11, 4-8 away) 117-115 tonight at TD Garden in double overtime.

All you can say is that this was an exceedingly ugly game. How else do you describe 28 turnovers by the Mavericks or suffering through two overtimes officiated by Joey Crawford? Boston outscored Dallas 34-17 on points off turnovers.

Paul Pierce rescued the Celts with a game-high 34 points (1st Celtic with 30+ points this season), six rebounds and four steals. Rajon Rondo just missed another triple-double with 16 points, 15 assists, nine rebounds and three steals. Kevin Garnett had 16 points and five rebounds, Jason Terry scored 10 against his former team while Jeff Green (16 points, 5 rebounds) and Chris Wilcox (10 points, 6 rebounds) were great off the bench and honestly should have played more.

The Mavericks are still without the talents of superstar Dirk Nowitzki but O.J. Mayo (24 points, 6 rebounds) is turning into the All-Star nobody thought he would be. Remember when the Celtics could have flipped Ray Allen for him? Yeah, that could have worked. Shawn Marion (16 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists) wasn't that far off of a triple-double of his own, Dahntay Jones and Chris Kaman (5 rebounds) scored 12 while Derek Fisher added 10 points.

I think the average age of Dallas is 53 when you factor in Vince Carter (10 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists). Darren Collison (20 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds, 3 steals) was spectacular off the bench so I have no clue why he doesn't start over that fossil Fisher, who still hits daggers left and right.

Boston could never shake Dallas, despite leading 27-25 after the first quarter, 48-43 at halftime and 76-70 heading into the fourth. The Celtics hit 12 more free throws (25-13) and made eight more steals (16-8). They needed all of that since the Mavericks shot way better (51.1%-43.0%), hit two more 3-pointers (8-6), grabbed eight more rebounds (50-42) and handed out three more assists (27-24) with two more blocks (7-5). Oh and Dallas had 20 more points in the paint (60-40).

At the end of regulation, Rondo isolated on Fisher but he got blocked, thinking he'd get fouled but he wasn't. Even worse, Pierce basically did the same thing at the end of the first overtime as Jones stuffed his feeble attempt.

The C's passed their first Texas test of the week but it will get harder this weekend as they travel to Houston (8 p.m., CSN) on Friday and San Antonio (8:30 p.m., CSN) on Saturday. The Rockets are 10-11 and fourth in the Southwest Division while the Spurs are 18-5 and first in the Southwest Division. Nobody expected much from Kevin McHale's Rockets but mostly thanks to James Harden and some emerging young guys, they are pretty competitive. As for San Antonio, they continue to defy age and play excellent team basketball while battling Oklahoma City for the top spot in the Western Conference.

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