BOSTON (AP) -- Paul Pierce squandered a chance to win the game at
the end of regulation, but wasn't about to waste a second
Pierce scored a season-high 38 points, hit the game-winning
jumper with 23 seconds left and deflected Tayshaun Prince's 3-point
attempt on Detroit's last possession, helping the Boston Celtics
beat the Pistons 115-113 in double overtime Friday night.
The Celtics won for the sixth time in seven games since trading
for Antoine Walker and maintained a three-game lead over
Philadelphia in the Atlantic Division.
Boston had chances to win the game at the end of regulation and
the first overtime, but Pierce missed a 15-footer as time expired
in regulation, and Ricky Davis, who finished with 23 points,
misfired on a turnaround jumper at the buzzer in the first
Pierce, who also had 12 rebounds, sank the winning shot over
Rasheed Wallace in the second overtime and then got a piece of
Prince's shot with 6 seconds left.
"This was a good win despite the circumstances," Pierce said.
"We showed a lot of heart. This was a really gutsy win for us and
it says a lot about the team's character."
The Celtics snapped a five-game losing skid against Detroit,
winning against the Pistons for the first time since a 99-92
victory at home on April 16, 2003. The Pistons lost their fourth
consecutive road game and have dropped four of five overall.
"We had control, but we missed a couple shots, they made a
couple, a couple of calls didn't go our way and they got back in
it," Detroit guard Chauncey Billups said. "They won it with a
good shot from Paul Pierce. Tough shot."
Boston had a 95-92 lead and possession late in regulation, but
Walker missed a wide-open 3-pointer with 22 seconds left and Gary
Payton fouled Billups while shooting a 3-pointer with 15.8 seconds
remaining. The ex-Celtic sank all three foul shots to tie the game.
Walker had his worst game since returning to Boston, missing his
first nine attempts from the field and finishing 4-of-19 for nine
"We're tough," Walker said. "We have so many different
weapons. When I was here 16 months ago, if I went 4-of-19, we
wouldn't have won games like this. But we have more weapons now."
Prince led Detroit with 27 points. Richard Hamilton added 24 and
Billups finished with 23. Ben Wallace tied a season-high with 19
"We had a chance to put the game away and we didn't," Pistons
assistant Gar Heard said. "They got a couple of offensive
rebounds, a couple of our guys fouled out and we just didn't
protect the ball down the stretch when we had a chance to put the
Celtics coach Doc Rivers and Detroit coach Larry Brown had
a 15-minute conversation in the Pistons team bus prior to the game
after the building was evacuated due to a smoke condition in one of
the freight elevators. ... Gary Payton's son, Gary II, was on the
Celtics bench for the first six minutes of the game. ... Ben
Wallace had 14 rebounds in the first half. ... Massachusetts
governor Mitt Romney was seated courtside. ... Boston committed
just one turnover in the first half.