Celtics rally, overtake Clippers
BOSTON — Isaiah Thomas had 36 points and 11 assists, including a fade away jumper that sent the game to an extra period, to help the Boston Celtics overtake the Los Angeles Clippers 139-134 in overtime on Wednesday night.
Jared Sullinger added 21 points and 11 rebounds. Jae Crowder finished with 19 points, and Avery Bradley added 18 points as the Celtics won their eighth straight at home.
Boston played the second half without big man Kelly Olynyk. He left late in the first half with a bruised right shoulder.
The Clippers led by five late in regulation, but went without a field goal for more than three minutes.
Chris Paul led the Clippers with 35 points and 13 assists. J.J. Redick added 27 points and DeAndre Jordan finished with 21 points and 16 rebounds.
The loss spoiled what may be Clippers' forward Paul Pierce's final game in the Boston Garden. The 38-year-old played 15 seasons with the Celtics and was facing his former team for the eighth time.
The Clippers opened overtime with a four-point play by Redick.
After a Celtics miss, he was fouled again on a 3-point attempt, and connected on two of his three free throws to give Los Angeles a six-point lead.
Boston didn't go away, and eventually tied it on a jumper by Evan Turner. Turner then put the Celtics in front 135-132 via a three-point play — his seventh straight point — with 1:33 left.
Both teams traded baskets, before Pierce came up short on a 27-footer that was rebounded by the Celtics.
Los Angeles had a chance to tie it up, and Jamal Crawford's long 3-point attempted nearly banked in before rimming out.
Los Angeles led 120-117 with 56 seconds to play in regulation after Thomas was fouled on a driving layup. He missed his ensuing free throw, but it was rebounded by Sullinger. He connected on the first of his two free throws to trim it to 120-118.
Following a pair of free throws by Redick, Thomas gave the Celtics life again with a teardrop jumper.
Paul missed a long jumper with the shot clock winding down on the Clippers next possession, but Jae Crowder was called for a loose ball foul with 23.3 remaining
Jordan misfired on both ensuing free throws, and Thomas tied it with fade away jumper.
Paul had a good look at a jumper that would have won it regulation, but it bounced off the side of the rim at the buzzer.
Clippers: The Clippers did not have a field goal for the final 3:29 of regulation. ... Paul had 10 points and five assists in the first quarter. It was the 37th time in his career he's had at least 10 points and five assists in a quarter. That's the most in NBA since 2005-06.
Celtics: Improved to 10-3 in the second game of back-to-backs.
Los Angeles hosts San Antonio on Feb. 18.
Boston travels to Utah on Feb. 19.
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