Celtics sweat out win over Pelicans
(The Sports Xchange) - Brad Stevens had a feeling his team, coming off a five-game western trip and battling for playoff position, could be in for a rough time Wednesday night.
Yes, even against the decimated New Orleans Pelicans.
"I thought we looked a little road weary, but on those nights you have to find a way," the Boston Celtics coach said after his club escaped with a 104-97 victory over the undermanned but pesky Pelicans. "I was actually pretty pleased because I knew it was going to be really hard, due to the circumstances of everything."
The Celtics saw a 16-point, early-third quarter lead shrink to three, then grow back to 14 late in the quarter, but the Pelicans came back and had a chance to win.
New Orleans rallied despite being without injured players averaging a total of 100 points per game.
"They played really, really well and really hard," Stevens said after Boston's third consecutive win left the Celtics (46-32) in a virtual tie with the Atlanta Hawks for third place in the Eastern Conference. The Heat (45-32) are a half-game back in fifth, and the Charlotte Hornets (45-33) are a half-game behind Miami in sixth.
The Celtics play three of their last four games at home, the only road game against Atlanta on Saturday night.
Avery Bradley hit a jumper to snap a 93-93 tie, and Isaiah Thomas scored 32 points for the victory.
Bradley shook off a poor shooting night by nailing a late 3-pointer. Continued...