Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 3)

Series starts 11/5

Game 1: Saturday, November 5th
Game 2: Friday, November 25th
Game 3: Wednesday, January 4th

Bobcats 89

(4-9, 1-6 away)

Celtics 90

(5-7, 5-3 home)

    Coverage: NE14

    7:30 PM ET, November 25, 2005

    TD Garden, Boston, MA

    1 2 3 4 T
    CHA 25 23 17 2489
    BOS 28 19 22 2190

    Top Performers

    Charlotte: B. Knight 17 Pts, 3 Reb, 8 Ast, 3 Stl

    Boston: P. Pierce 27 Pts, 8 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Stl

    Pierce's last-second layup lifts Celtics to win

    BOSTON (AP) -- At this point, the Boston Celtics will take wins any way they can get them.

    Paul Pierce made a layup with 0.3 seconds left to give the struggling Celtics a 90-89 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday night.

    "This was a much-needed one," Pierce said. "Regardless of how we got it. We haven't played well the last five games."

    Pierce took the inbounds pass with 4 seconds left and drove down the left side of the lane for a layup. He finished with 27 points.

    "The play was drawn up good," said Boston's Ricky Davis, who finished with 25 points. "We got exactly what we wanted. We got the stop we needed at the end and then executed a great play."

    The Celtics had lost two straight -- including a road loss on Wednesday that gave the Atlanta Hawks their first win of the season -- and four of five. The Bobcats fell to 1-6 on the road and 4-9 overall.

    "We had some defensive lapses early in the game and then we found a way to get back into the game," Charlotte's Emeka Okafor said. "Then we fell apart at the end. We played hard, but I'm not big on taking positives from losses like this."

    Raef LaFrentz finished with 22 points and 10 rebounds for the Celtics.

    Gerald Wallace and Brevin Knight each had 17 points for Charlotte. Okafor added 13 points and 11 rebounds.

    Boston led 75-65 early in the fourth quarter, but Charlotte answered with a 10-0 run that tied the game with 7:21 left.

    After the teams traded baskets, Kareem Rush knocked down a 3-pointer that gave the Bobcats an 80-77 lead. Pierce answered with a three-point play and then stole the ball from Okafor and took it the length of the court for a layup that put Boston back on top 82-80 with 4:17 left.

    Okafor tied it at 82 before LaFrentz connected on a 3-pointer to give the Celtics an 85-82 lead with 3:38 to go. Knight sliced through the lane for a pair of driving layups and converted a steal that put Charlotte back in front 88-85 with 1:18 remaining.

    Pierce and Okafor each sank one of two free throws and Pierce cut the deficit to 89-88 with a drive with 29 seconds left.

    "This was an important win for us," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "In our standards, this was like a throwback game defensively. So, it was what we needed. I think this team needed this win."

    Game notes

    The Celtics were without point guard Delonte West for the second straight game because of a hip pointer. Rookie Orien Greene started and Dan Dickau came off the bench. West hopes to play Monday night against Orlando, though Rivers isn't sure. "It didn't sound too promising for the next game," Rivers said. "Even though Delonte said he was going to play." ... Celtics rookie Gerald Green was activated before the game and was in uniform for the first time this season, but did not see any action. ... Kendrick Perkins started in place of Mark Blount for the Celtics. Blount, who was healthy, did not play. ... Charlotte entered the game with a league-leading 12.25 steals per game.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 89 90
    FGM-FGA 36-82 (.439) 36-79 (.456)
    3PM-3PA 4-16 (.250) 4-13 (.308)
    FTM-FTA 13-22 (.591) 14-22 (.636)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 13-42 9-38
    Assists 21 21
    Turnovers 19 16
    Steals 6 7
    Blocks 7 5
    Fast Break Points 10 11
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 24 (0/0) 29 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 3 10

    Top Performers

    Brevin Knight Knight
    Points: 17
    Reb: 3
    Ast: 8
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 0
    Paul Pierce Pierce
    Points: 27
    Reb: 8
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 0