for this game

Without Garnett, Ray Allen, Celtics rout Heat

Jan 30, 2008 - 5:57 AM By Michael Snyder PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MIAMI (Ticker) -- The Boston Celtics didn't come close to needing their big guns to dominate the punchless Miami Heat on Tuesday night.

With Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen sitting out, Leon Powe had a career-high 25 points and 11 rebounds and Rajon Rondo matched a career-best with 23 points as the Celtics cruised to a 117-87 victory over the Heat.

Tony Allen and Eddie House each had a season-high 20 points for the Celtics, who easily beat the Heat for the fourth straight time.

Miami, which had snapped a 15-game losing streak on Saturday, was completely outmatched from start to finish despite Boston missing two members of its "Big Three."

"Everybody took it as a challenge with those guys out, and we went out and played team basketball," Tony Allen said.

"We were overwhelmed right from the get-go," Miami coach Pat Riley said. "Tony Allen took the challenge, Leon Powe and the guys off the bench ... in the first quarter, they overwhelmed us with their quickness and their intensity and their play."

The Celtics were playing their second game in a row without Garnett - their second-leading scorer and top rebounder - due to an abdominal strain, and Ray Allen missed the contest with the flu.

Leading by four points late in the first, the Celtics went on a 13-0 run - six from Rondo - over the final 4:30 of the opening quarter to take a commanding 31-14 lead after the first. Miami shot a dismal 13 percent (3-of-23) over the first 12 minutes.

Former Heat forward James Posey hit a 3-pointer to push the lead to 49-25 and then Eddie House - who also used to play for Miami - hit another shot from the arc to push the commanding advantage to 52-25 with 5:57 left in the second.

"We got stops, we shared the ball and guys made plays," Posey said. "If you do that on any team, you can have games like that. It was just a good job by everybody playing, stepping up and getting the win."

It was so bad for the Heat that the only member of the "Big Three" on the court for the Celtics, Paul Pierce, hadn't scored a single point until there was 1:46 left in the second quarter when his jumper gave Boston a 62-34 lead.

After leading by 22 at the half, Boston erased any doubt of a Miami comeback to start the third quarter as Tony Allen scored eight points during a 16-4 run to open the second half, giving the Celtics an 80-46 lead with 7:35 left in the quarter.

"We were kind of short today," Allen said. "We just all told each other that, 'Hey, we need each other and we're going out to get a win. You've got to be ready to play.'"

Pierce tied a season low by scoring just seven points, but his offense was not needed as Rondo, Powe and Allen combined to shoot 23-of-35 (66 percent) from the floor for Boston.

"To have 117 points when Paul Pierce only had seven and Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen didn't play is something we didn't expect before the game," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "Paul Pierce stepped up even though he only had seven points, he accounted for so many more. He had many hockey assists where he passed to make the next pass."

Mark Blount had 20 points to lead the Heat, who lost forward Udonis Haslem with a sprained left ankle in the second quarter.

Miami superstar guard Dwyane Wade was held to a season-low seven points on 1-of-9 shooting before leaving midway through the fourth due to flu-like symptoms when the game was already well out of reach.

"We just didn't bring it," Riley said. "I'm embarrassed by the effort."

Haslem was seen wearing a protective boot after the game and will not travel with the team for Wednesday's tilt in Orlando. Wade is listed as questionable.

  • ** CONFIRMED **
    BOSTON 117

    Jan 29 10:09 PM

  • NBA
    BOSTON 94

    Jan 29 9:34 PM

  • NBA
    BOSTON 64

    Jan 29 8:46 PM

  • NBA
    BOSTON 31

    Jan 29 8:12 PM