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Celtics 85, T'Wolves 82: Celts Nearly Blow Another One, Hang On To Top Wolves

It was ugly, but at this point, style points don't matter to the Celtics. They'll take a win however they can get one.

On Sunday night in Minneapolis, the C's blew a 25-point, first half lead but hung on to top the T'Wolves, 85-82. Paul Pierce scored 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds while Kevin Garnett, the best player in the history of the Minnesota franchise, added 13 points, 13 rebounds and five assists to lead the Celts, who played without point guard Rajon Rondo.

Boston led 32-13 after one and 38-13 in the second quarter before going into another prolonged hibernation on offense. The Wolves, who are last in the NBA at points allowed with 107.1 per game, outscored the Celts 49-32 in the second and third quarters and even led by two as late as the five minute mark of the fourth. The C's shot 40 percent from the floor and made just four of 15 from long distance. The Wolves missed 22 of their first 27 shots but a 22-6 run in the third quarter pulled them even with the C's at the start of the fourth. Without leading scorer and rebounder Kevin Love for the third straight game, Michael Beasley picked up the slack for the Wolves (17-57), with 28 points and 10 rebounds.

With Rondo sidelined due to a strained pinky finger, Delonte West started and had eight points and five assists in 31 minutes. Ray Allen and Nenad Krstic each scored 11 points for the C's while Glen Davis added eight off the bench despite missing 11 of 15 shots. The Celtics (51-21), who remained a half game ahead of the Miami Heat for second place in the Eastern Conference with the win, continue their four-game road trip Monday night in Indianapolis against the Pacers.