March 18, 2009

NBA: Boston 112, Miami 108 (OT)

Paul Pierce delivered 21 of his 36 points in the fourth period and overtime Wednesday, pushing Boston to a 112-108 decision over Miami.

The Celtics clinched the Atlantic Division title for the second straight year, although they continued to play without a significant segment of their roster.

Ray Allen was out with an elbow injury, superstar Kevin Garnett missed his 13th consecutive game with a knee strain and Leon Powe did not play because of a sore knee.

Pierce, however, carried the load again. He played 47 minutes Wednesday after scoring 37 points in a loss to Chicago Tuesday.

Rajon Rondo chipped in 27 points with 10 assists. Boston, which halted a two-game skid, is 7-6 without Garnett.

Miami, meanwhile, played without star Dwyane Wade (hip). Michael Beasley led the Heat with 21 points and fellow rookie Mario Chalmers had 19.

Boston, which let a 13-point lead after one period get away, scored the first eight points in overtime.