Final

Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series starts 1/14

Game 1: Friday, January 14th
Hawks94Final
Celtics106
Game 2: Saturday, January 22nd
Celtics96Final
Hawks100
Game 3: Wednesday, March 9th
Hawks91Final
Celtics95
Game 4: Friday, April 1st
Celtics116Final
Hawks100

Hawks 94

(6-27, 2-13 away)

Celtics 106

(17-20, 12-6 home)

    7:30 PM ET, January 14, 2005

    TD Garden, Boston, MA

    1 2 3 4 T
    ATL 21 26 29 1894
    BOS 34 21 25 26106

    Top Performers

    Atlanta: A. Walker 21 Pts, 17 Reb, 8 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

    Boston: P. Pierce 21 Pts, 15 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

    Pierce adds 21 points and 15 rebounds for Boston

    BOSTON (AP) -- The Boston Celtics didn't have much trouble against the worst team in the Eastern Conference.

    Ricky Davis came off the bench to score 30 points, and Paul Pierce had 21 points and 15 rebounds Friday night to lift the Celtics to their seventh win in eight home games, 106-94 over the Atlanta Hawks.

    The Celtics, who have struggled away from home this season, were barely tested by the 6-27 Hawks.

    "It was a win. I didn't think we played great," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "We played good in stretches."

    The Hawks trailed by double digits at some point in each of the first three quarters and fell behind by 12 early in the fourth before making a brief charge.

    The Celtics opened the final quarter by scoring the first six points, taking an 88-76 lead on Al Jefferson's free throw with 8:43 to play, but the Hawks sliced it to 90-85 on Predrag Drobnjak's 3-pointer with 6:03 left.

    "I thought when we cut it to five we had a legitimate shot, and then they hit a three and a two to drop it back to 10," Atlanta coach Mike Woodson said. "We could never recover from that."

    Gary Payton added 15 points and seven assists for Boston.

    Former Celtic Antoine Walker had a double-double for the sixth straight game by halftime. He finished with 21 points on 10-of-30 shooting and had 17 rebounds. Drobnjak matched his season-high with 20 points for the Hawks.

    After the Hawks closed to five early in the fourth, Pierce had a basket and Raef LaFrentz nailed a 3-pointer from the right wing, making it 95-85. The Celtics kept it up after an Atlanta timeout when Pierce nailed a short jumper and Davis followed with another 3.

    That would be more than enough to help the Celtics coast to their 12th win in 18 home games this season.

    "We feel good. We're trying to protect our home court," Davis said. "Guys just feel comfortable here."

    Pierce also admitted he certainly didn't want to let his former teammate and friend, Walker, spoil the night.

    "When you're playing against a guy that you've played with and is a friend, you don't want him to get bragging rights," Pierce said.

    Walker felt the Hawks could have won if they converted some easy shots.

    "It's unfortunate because we played well enough to win, but there were way too many missed layups and free throws if you want to win on the road," he said.

    Atlanta was 15-for-29 from the line, and shot only 40.4 percent from the floor.

    Atlanta dropped to 2-13 on the road.

    The Celtics, who never trailed and were tied only at 2-all, opened a 15-point first quarter lead and led 55-47 at halftime edge. ^Notes:@ Boston F Tom Gugliotta left before the game due to an illness. ... The Hawks were trying to win consecutive games for the first time this season. ... Pop Star Gavin DeGraw performed a free concert after the game. ... Walker playfully pulled on Jefferson's jersey when the pair lined up at the free throw line. Jefferson wears No. 8, which was Walker's old number. ... Boston is 8-1 when Payton scores at least 15 points. ... Pierce's 15 rebounds tied a career high.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Team Stat Comparison

     
    ATL
    BOS
    Points 94 106
    FGM-FGA 38-94 (.404) 39-78 (.500)
    3PM-3PA 3-14 (.214) 7-15 (.467)
    FTM-FTA 15-29 (.517) 21-29 (.724)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 19-51 11-49
    Assists 27 21
    Turnovers 13 18
    Steals 12 7
    Blocks 5 5
    Fast Break Points 17 16
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 24 (0/0) 24 (3/0)
    Largest Lead 0 16

    Top Performers

    Atlanta
    Boston
    Antoine Walker Walker
    Points: 21
    Reb: 17
    Ast: 8
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 1
    Paul Pierce Pierce
    Points: 21
    Reb: 15
    Ast: 7
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 1