John Carroll debuts in Boston
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - The Boston Celtics play their first game under interim head coach John Carroll tonight as they welcome the Detroit Pistons to the FleetCenter.
The Celtics announced the resignation of head coach Jim O'Brien during a Tuesday evening press conference and named Carroll, who was an assistant coach, their interim head coach.
O'Brien's resignation stems from conflicts with Boston's director of basketball operations Danny Ainge. O'Brien led the Celtics to consecutive playoff berths after a six-year absence from the postseason. He took over for Rick Pitino on January 8, 2001, compiling an overall mark of 139-119.
This will be the third meeting of the season between the two teams. The Pistons defeated the Celtics, 96-88, on November 5 at The Palace. Detroit also beat Boston, 78-68, on January 5 at the FleetCenter.
On Sunday, the Celtics lost to the New Jersey Nets, 110-91, in a battle of Atlantic Division powers at the Meadowlands. Ricky Davis paced the Celtics in the loss, as he finished with a game-high 26 points.
Paul Pierce struggled against New Jersey, as he finished with 13 points on just 3-of-15 shooting for Boston, which had its two-game winning streak snapped.
The Celtics, who have lost two of their last three at home, are 11-13 as the host.
Detroit comes into tonight's contest on a three-game losing streak. On Sunday, the Pistons found themselves on the wrong end of a 91-82 decision against the Atlanta Hawks at The Palace.
Corliss Williamson tied a season-high with 20 points off the bench in the loss for the Pistons, who had their nine-game home winning streak snapped and lost their third straight overall after winning 13 in a row. Ben Wallace finished with 14 points and 15 rebounds, while Richard Hamilton scored 11 points.
In Sunday's loss, Wallace (831) passed Bill Laimbeer for third place on Detroit's all-time blocks list.
Detroit has allowed over 100 points only once this season.
The Pistons, who have lost two straight on the road, are 11-10 as the visitor this season.
Detroit has won five of seven and six of the last nine contests with the Celtics. The Pistons have won two of their last three at Boston.BOS DET