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    Pelicans catch fire in fourth, beat Boston side missing Kyrie Irving and Marcus Smart

    Mar 19, 2018

    NEW ORLEANS — Anthony Davis had 34 points and 11 rebounds, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the banged-up Boston Celtics, 108-89, on Sunday night (Monday, Manila time).

    Second-year pro Cheick Diallo had a season-high 17 points and Nikola Mirotic added 16 for New Orleans, which was desperate to win after dropping four of its previous five while in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race.

    Davis capped his night by hitting a baseline fallaway as he was fouled by Abdel Nader to make it 106-85 with 3:35 to go. The shot brought the crowd to its feet as Davis stumbled toward the sideline, where he exchanged high-fives with several fans before walking to the foul line to hit his foul shot.

    The play capped a 22-6, fourth-quarter run to blow open what had been a tight game for most of the first three quarters.

    Davis also threw down his share of crowd-pleasing dunks, some of which were set up by lobs from former Celtic Rajon Rondo, who finished with 11 assists.

    Jayson Tatum scored 23 for Boston, which has lost three of four and was playing its third straight game without either All-Star guard Kyrie Irving (sore left knee) or guard Marcus Smart (sprained right thumb). Marcus Morris scored 17 and Terry Rozier 13 for the Celtics, who scored only 13 points on 4-of-20 shooting in the fourth quarter.

    The game appeared to change after Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry was assessed a technical foul for a second game in a row after a three-shot foul was called against one of his players.

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    On Saturday, it was Holiday defending James Harden. Against Boston, it was Ian Clark defending Nader. That gave Nader four foul shots, but he missed all four with Boston trailing 82-76 early in the fourth quarter. The crowd grew more jubilant with each miss.

    New Orleans then when right down the court and scored on Mirotic's hook shot. A few minutes later, the Pelicans led by double digits and were pulling away.

    TIP-INS

    Celtics: Irving had been listed as questionable coming in, but coach Brad Stevens said the club doesn't want to push Irving to play through pain at this point and wants him closer to full health. ... New Orleans native Greg Monroe, who chose Boston over his hometown club when he was briefly a free agent this season, had his third straight game with at least 12 points. ... Al Horford finished with six points, less than half of his average for the season.

    Pelicans: Solomon Hill made his season debut after recovering from surgery in August to repair a torn hamstring. He played eight minutes and finished with one assist. ... Shortly before tip-off, the NBA announced that Gentry was fined $15,000 for criticizing officials after Saturday night's loss to Houston. ... Davis had his 80th career game with at least 30 points and 10 rebounds since joining the NBA in the 2012-13 season. ... E'Twaun Moore scored 11 points. ... Jrue Holiday did not score until the third quarter and finished with seven points.

    UP NEXT

    Celtics: Host Oklahoma City on Tuesday night.

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    Pelicans: Host Dallas on Tuesday night.

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