Jefferson, Celtics rally past Sonics
Boston, MA (Sports Network) – Al Jefferson scored 31 points, pulled down 16
rebounds and dished out four assists, and the Boston Celtics overcame a 13-
point deficit with a 17-0 run in the third quarter to top the Seattle
SuperSonics, 118-103, at TD Banknorth Garden.
Paul Pierce had 21 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, and Rajon Rondo
chipped in 20 points for the Celtics, who have won five of six after
losing 22 of 23. Gerald Green added 19 points for Boston, which was missing
starting guard Delonte West and reserve forward Ryan Gomes. West is recovering
from a mild concussion suffered in the third quarter of the Celtics’ 111-80
loss to the Houston Rockets on Wednesday. Gomes sat out with a sore
Ray Allen had a team-high 22 points for Seattle, which has lost two straight.
Nick Collison and Earl Watson each donated 17 points for the Sonics. Collison
added eight rebounds, Rashard Lewis finished with 16 points, and Chris Wilcox
had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
The game was tightly played in the first quarter, until Seattle opened a 28-24
lead on a pair of Wilcox free throws at 3:43. The Sonics were up 35-31 after
12 minutes and opened a wider margin in the second stanza.
Johan Petro’s jumper at 11:02 ignited a 10-3 run for Seattle, and the reserve
center capped the spurt with a hook shot at 8:54 as the Sonics opened a 45-34
Seattle led 66-57 at intermission.
The Sonics continued to pour it on after the break, as Lewis’ trey at 6:41
made it 79-67. Boston battled back, however, using a 17-0 run to pull ahead.
Jefferson’s hook shot at 2:15 gave the Celtics the lead for good, and the team
carried an 84-82 edge into the fourth quarter.
It was all Boston after that point, as the Celtics opened an 11-point margin,
101-90, on Jefferson’s driving layup with 7:56 remaining. Seattle pulled
within nine down the stretch, but never got any closer.
X-Rays on Gomes’ left foot were negative, and the Celtics said he will be re-
evaluated on Sunday…Seattle’s three-game winning streak against Boston was
snapped…The Sonics were playing without forward Danny Fortson, who was
suspended for two games on Friday for conduct detrimental to the team.
The Sonics are just 7-24 on the road this season, while the Celtics have just
eight home wins…Damien Wilkins added 13 points off the bench for Seattle.