Boston’s Paul Pierce scored 30 points, while Kevin Garnett reached a rebounding milestone on Friday as the Celtics welcomed Rajon Rondo back with a 91-89 NBA victory over the New York Knicks.
Ray Allen scored nine of his 14 points in the final five minutes as the Celtics nabbed their seventh victory in eight games.
Garnett totaled 15 points and eight rebounds, grabbing his 10,000th career defensive rebound in the second quarter.
He became the third player in NBA history to reach the mark, joining former Celtic Robert Parish (10,117) and Karl Malone (11,406).
Rondo, who missed eight games with a right wrist injury, had seven points with seven assists and five rebounds.
Allen gave Boston their first lead since the first quarter with a three-pointer with 4 minutes, 24 seconds remaining.
When Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni was called for a technical foul for arguing, Allen made the free throw to put Boston up 83-79.
Another Allen basket made it 90-85 with 1 minute, 26 seconds to play. Boston appeared to take a 93-89 lead when Pierce connected from three-point range, but a video review showed he did not get the shot off in time to beat the shot clock.
However, the Knicks could not take advantage as Landry Fields missed a three-point attempt. After Pierce’s free throw made it 91-89 with 5.2 seconds remaining, New York’s Steve Novak was off-target from three-point range.
Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 26 points. Tyson Chandler fouled out with 20 points and 11 rebounds, while Amar’e Stoudemire had 16 points and 11 rebounds.
The Knicks, who led by 12 early in the third quarter, have now lost 11 of 13 and fallen to 8-15 overall.
HEAT 99, 76ERS 79
In Philadelphia, the Heat’s Dwyane Wade scored 26 points to lead Miami to a 99-79 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, putting the hosts back in their place with a convincing victory in the clash between two divisional leaders.
Coming off wins against Orlando and Chicago, the Sixers were aiming to complete a hat-trick of home wins over the league’s big guns, but could not go the distance against Wade, LeBron James — 19 points and 12 rebounds — and company.
Wade made a pair of ferocious dunks during the game-changing 15-0 run in the fourth quarter that turned a tight game into a comfortable win that pushed the Sixers’ first sellout crowd of the season toward the exits.
Thaddeus Young scored 16 points for the Sixers, whose four-game winning streak was ended.
PACERS 98, MAVERICKS 87
In Dallas, Paul George hit seven three-pointers and finished with a career-high 30 points as Indiana won in Dallas for the first time in eight years.
The Pacers took the lead for good with seven consecutive points in the first two minutes of the second half. George made a go-ahead running layup then had a steal that he turned into a dunk and a free throw.
Indiana won their 10th road game this season, matching Miami for the most in the NBA. The Pacers had lost 11 of their previous 12 road games against the Mavericks.
Dirk Nowitzki scored a season-high 30 points for Dallas on 12 of 17 shooting.
THUNDER 101, GRIZZLIES 94
In Oklahoma City, Kevin Durant scored 36 points and hit the tiebreaking three-pointer in the final minute to lift Oklahoma City over Memphis.
Durant scored the final seven points of the game after Memphis had pulled even at 94-94 with 1 minute, 12 seconds remaining.