Celtics captain Paul Pierce led the way tonight as the Celtics dominated game 3. Pierce finished with 38 points, Rondo had a triple double, and Ray Allen had 32 in the win.
Overall tonight's game was a gritty, well played game that had a great defensive effort, a dominant effort on the boards, and some incredible shooting out of Allen and Pierce.
The Celtics capped off the first quarter with a 27-20 lead after leading 22-8 at one point. Pierce led the way with 14 points in the first and played some very tough defense on Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony. The game was very chippy from the very beginning when Stoudemire had a hard playoff foul on Pierce who reacted with a chest pounding star down of Amare. Jermaine O’Neal, although he didn’t score, played some great post defense. Garnett also played a very solid first quarter with 3 pts/4 rebs drawing several double teams from the Knicks.
Ray Allen had another great game with 32 points on an unbelievable 8-11 3 point shooting. At one point he had a poor shot and quickly was given another opportunity after an offensive rebound by Rondo, he followed that up with another dagger
Rondo's line overall was 15 pts/11 rebs/20 ast/2 stl/4 to's. He had an incredible game on the boards tonight giving the Celtics 6 offensive rebounds in tonights game, which was a major problem for New York overall tonight.
One spot for improvement tonight, once again, was the Celtics bench. They seemed to be "sand in a machine," as Tommy Heinsohn said, whenever they were put in the game. At one point the Celtics coach Doc Rivers seemed as though he didn't want to take his starts out. Overall the big 4 4 averaged 30+ minutes each and were pivotal in tonight's game.
The Knicks fans were extremely ornery tonight and had no problem letting the referees know what they thought of their calls on several occasions. At several points in the 2nd half it seemed as though you could hear a pin drop in Madison Square Garden. Knicks fan Spike Lee was seen leaving the game early in the 4th quarter in disgust.
The Celtics finished the 4th quarter off with most of the starters on the bench and went on to win 113-96. Game 4 between New York and Boston will be at 3:30 EST on Sunday, April 24th. They look to sweep the Knicks and move on to the second round.