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Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Game 17: Celtics vs. Cavaliers

By Chris Forsberg

(12-4, 5-3 away)     -- vs. --     (7-9, 4-4 home)
at Quicken Loans Arena, 7 p.m. | CSN, WEEI (850 AM)

GAME PREVIEW (via Stats Inc.)
Following a loss to Cleveland during the opening week of the season, Boston center Shaquille O'Neal admitted that the Celtics overlooked a Cavaliers team playing its first game without LeBron James.

The Celtics likely won't make that mistake again, especially since Cleveland has found someone new to take big shots and make big plays with the game on the line.

Boston looks to avenge that early defeat and win its fourth in a row Tuesday night when it visits the Cavaliers, who have leaned heavily on Mo Williams in winning two of their last three games.

After opening the season with an emotional 88-80 win over Miami on Oct. 26, the Celtics (12-4) suffered a letdown the following night and lost 95-87 in Cleveland. Boston, which frustrated James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in one of the most highly anticipated regular-season games in years, had trouble against a Cavaliers team that got a game-high 21 points from J.J. Hickson.

"We took them a little bit too lightly," O'Neal said after that contest.

The Celtics haven't been caught off guard too many other times since. They won five in a row immediately following that defeat and are tied with Orlando for the best record in the Eastern Conference.

One of the three losses Boston suffered since falling to Cleveland came at Toronto on Nov. 21. The Celtics avenged that defeat with a 110-101 win over the Raptors on Friday.

Read the full preview HERE.