At the buzzer: Celtics 85, T-Wolves 82

March, 27, 2011
3/27/11
9:38
PM ET
David Sherman/NBAE/Getty ImagesOh, Baby: Glen Davis and the Celtics didn't make things easy for themselves vs. the T-Wolves.
First impressions after the Boston Celtics defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 85-82 Sunday night at the Target Center in Minneapolis:

HOW THE GAME WAS WON
Captain Paul Pierce scored 12 of his team-high 23 points in the fourth quarter to prevent the Celtics from another embarrassing loss after Minnesota rallied back from an early 25-point deficit to make things interesting. Kevin Garnett added 13 point and 13 rebounds for Boston, while Michael Beasley scored a game-high 28 points on 11-of-28 shooting over 46 minutes for Minnesota.

TURNING POINT
Minnesota rallied back from that 25-point deficit to pull ahead 70-68 on a layup by Darko Milicic with 8:07 to play. Pierce responded on Boston's next possession by drilling a 3-pointer on a Garnett feed off an offensive rebound. But Pierce saved his best work for later in the frame. With Boston again down a point, Pierce drove hard to the basket, drawing a foul on Milicic and completing a three-point play. Pierce added an elbow jumper off a Garnett screen moments later for a 77-73 lead that the Celtics clung to down the stretch. Pierce scored 12 of Boston's 21 fourth-quarter points.

STAT OF THE GAME
The Celtics made 12 of their first 15 shots (80 percent) while building their early cushion, but Boston closed the game by making a mere 18-of-60 shots (30 percent).

UNSUNG HERO
Delonte West not only drew the start, but playing through recent ankle pain, chipped in 8 points, 5 assists, 3 rebounds and 2 steals over 30 minutes. His offensive rebound in the final minute prevented the Timberwolves from having a chance to tie.

WHAT IT MEANS
Yikes. The first nine minutes made you wonder if the Celtics had snapped out of their funk. The next 35 minutes left some ready to write this team off for the season. Regardless, Boston emerged with the win and that's more than they could say about Friday's game against Charlotte. The Celtics play the second night of a back-to-back Monday in Indiana before getting two days to rest -- and one very important practice day to try to shake out of this fog.

Chris Forsberg

Celtics reporter, ESPNBoston.com

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jeff Green
PTS AST STL MIN
19.6 1.5 1.0 34.0
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 8.2
AssistsR. Rondo 10.8
StealsR. Rondo 1.7
BlocksK. Olynyk 0.8