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News » Celtics don't need Big 3 for 62nd win

Celtics don't need Big 3 for 62nd win

Celtics don't need Big 3 for 62nd win
BOSTON (AP) - The Boston Celtics are going into the playoffs on a roll and Eddie House is headed there after setting a record for the historic franchise.

House broke the single-season record with a 44.4 percentage on 3-point shots - a mark he had his eye on from the start of the 115-107 win over the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night. The man he passed? Current Celtics general manager Danny Ainge.

Around the NBA

Wednesday's action

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"It might just help me" get another contract, House joked. "It just felt good, man, especially getting the win, and the way I had to get (the record). I started off so slow and I had to hit my last four to get it."

Those baskets helped the Celtics finish the regular season on an 8-1 surge, all without Kevin Garnett, who missed 22 of the past 26 games with a strained right knee. He could be ready for the playoff opener against the Chicago Bulls.

House had 20 points and Glen Davis scored 21 for the Celtics as Paul Pierce and Ray Allen rested for the postseason. Caron Butler scored a season-high 39 for the Wizards, who ended the season at the bottom of the Eastern Conference with a 19-63 record, matching their worst mark for an 82-game season.

"It's now history," said interim coach Ed Tapscott, who is expected to be replaced by Flip Saunders. "When you have a record like that, you have it for a reason. It'll be somebody else's job to pick up the pieces."

House made five 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and 6-of 9 for the game to finish the season at 151-for-340. Ainge hit 44.3 percent of his 3-pointers (85-for-192) in 1986-87.

"That's what means the most to me, that I had the Celtic uniform on," House said. "If I set it for the Bobcats or the Clippers it really wouldn't be that big of a deal to me, but to do it here, with all the history and everybody that came through here.

"For my name to be at the top of that list, it feels good."

Tapscott was 18-53 after replacing Eddie Jordan, who was fired with a 1-10 record. He praised Butler for his strong effort.

"It's very important that you finish everything right," Butler said of his determination, "and build on going into the summer."

The defending champion Celtics ended with a 62-20 record, second best in the East.

"The playoffs will define the season," coach Doc Rivers said. "If you rank regular seasons, this year was better than last year, for me, because I thought it was far more adversity."

Pierce, who had played every game this season, and Allen, who set a team record with a 95.2 free-throw percentage, watched from the bench in business suits as the Celtics finished the game with a 24-8 run after the Wizards had taken a 99-91 lead.

House's last two 3-pointers turned a 99-95 deficit into a 101-99 lead before Butler's basket tied it with 3:56 remaining. Leon Powe then hit two free throws and Davis followed with a layup for a 105-101 advantage. Knowing House had set the record, Rivers took him out of the game to a standing ovation with 2:58 remaining.

"I was going for the record from the beginning of the game," House said. "All I was trying to shoot was 3s."

Nick Young and JaVale McGee scored 17 each for Washington, which played without top scorer Antawn Jamison. He hurt his right ankle in a 97-96 loss to Toronto on Monday night in which the Wizards squandered a 93-80 lead.

Garnett is critical to the Celtics' playoff chances. The club will see how he handles practice Thursday before deciding whether he'll play in the postseason opener.

" If he's not 100 percent - and he probably won't be - his intensity will be 100 percent and that's so important to our team," Rivers said before the game.

Washington also played without Brendan Haywood and Gilbert Arenas, who missed his fifth straight game after playing just his second of the season following knee surgery.

The Celtics led 57-52 at halftime but trailed 83-79 after the third quarter. A 16-3 Wizards run had given them a 79-73 lead.

Notes:The Celtics were 15-7 in the 22 games Garnett missed. ... Washington's Javaris Crittenton did not return after spraining his right ankle with 3:45 left in the third quarter. ... The Celtics posted their 100th consecutive sellout.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: April 16, 2009


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