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Return trip not in plan for C’s 04.27.10 at 2:01 pm ET
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WALTHAM — The next time Paul Pierce visits South Florida, he wants to be on a beach having fun in the sun.

To make sure he and his Celtics teammates avoid a working trip back on Thursday, they need to close out Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat in Game 5 at the Garden.

“There’s a lot of urgency,” Pierce said. “We don’t want to go to Miami. Hopefully the next time I go to Miami, I’ll be on vacation.”

While there was a lot of focus on the 46 points Wade put up in Game 4 on Sunday, on 16-of-24 shooting from the field, Pierce said it’s Wade’s supporting cast of Quentin Richardson and Michael Beasley that must be contained. And that starts with him.

“Other guys like [Carlos] Arroyo and Beasley can’t have big games for them,” Pierce said. “Wade is going to have the ball most of the time. You have to expect him [Wade] to have big numbers because of that. It’s the other guys definitely we have to shut down.”

While Arroyo was held to just six points in 21 minutes, Richardson and Beasley combined for 35 points while making a disturbing 13-of-27 shots from the field. That’s the stat that concerned coach Doc Rivers afterward and it’s what the Celtics must be aware of in Game 5 if they are to avoid the pain of getting on a plane Wednesday for South Florida.

Kevin Garnett had a slightly different take on what will be needed against the Heat. Garnett wants everyone to remember they can’t win the game by themselves.

“I thought, for the most part, everybody wanted to get this settled in Miami and we were trying to do it with one shot instead of one pass,” Garnett said. “We were one step late on a lot of rotations. They threw a zone at us and we were all out of whack with that.”

Read More: Celtics, Heat, Kevin Garnett, NBA playoffs
Pierce: It’s a must win 04.24.10 at 4:58 pm ET
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MIAMI – The Celtics elected not to hold practice Saturday afternoon after taking Game 3 from Miami on a dramatic buzzer-beater by Paul Pierce to take a 3-0 lead in their series, but don’t mistake that for over-confidence.

“I’€™m looking at it like it’€™s a 3-3 tie,” Pierce said. “It’€™s a must game for us. We want to be desperate for this win. We don’€™t want them coming back to Boston with any kind of confidence. You never know what can happen in this league. They’€™ve got a great player in [Dwyane] Wade and a team that played well down the stretch”

Ray Allen equated it to running a marathon.

“You don’€™t win anything if you get four in the first round,” he said. “Winning three games doesn’€™t mean anything either. You can’€™t go around and be fuzzy because you’€™ve won a couple of game. We have to make sure that we follow through because it is a process. It’€™s like running a marathon. You’€™re not done until you cross the finish line. So we have a finish line and we have to cross it.”

Kevin Garnett was asked if winning this series would give the Celtics some momentum going forward. Predictably, he did not bite.

“At this point right now, man, we’€™re focused on the Heat,” Garnett said. “We’€™re not looking past this game. I’€™m not even going to indulge in any of that conversation. The focus right now is trying to win this game in Miami.”

Read More: Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen,
C’s expect hostile environment 04.21.10 at 4:44 pm ET
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WALTHAM — Take a team that is playing for its playoff lives, add in a 29-point loss that their coach called “embarrassing,” sprinkle in some existing bad blood and the Celtics know that they will be walking into a frenzied arena Friday night for Game 3.

“Yeah, absolutely,” Doc Rivers said. “I told them that. Guys, at the end of the day all we’€™ve done is win two home games and Miami has yet to play a home game. That’€™s how they’re thinking for sure. Whether we won last by one, or whatever we won by, Game 3 is going to tough and we understand that.”

Kevin Garnett noted that when he traveled to Miami for the Eastern Conference Finals in 2006 to watch Chauncey Billups and Rasheed Wallace play with the Pistons that the crowd was a factor.

“Just anticipating it being very hostile,” Garnett said. “Watching Chauncey and Rasheed play them, how hostile and how crazy that town can get when they’€™re behind their team. It’€™s what we’€™re anticipating.”

The Celtics were a very good road team this past season. They were tied with Cleveland for the best road record in the Eastern Conference at 26-15 and were one game behind Dallas’ league-best mark. They beat Cleveland, Orlando, the Lakers, San Antonio and Dallas all on the road, but that was the regular season.

“It’€™s great to know that you can win on the road, but again, Miami could care less about our regular season the road,” Rivers said. “And we could care less about it. We have to come ready to play. The playoffs are a different beast.”

“Regular season is regular season,” Garnett added. “I never mix the two, to be honest.”

Instead the Celtics said they take their lessons from past playoff experiences and specifically from their seven-game series with Atlanta two seasons ago. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Add new tag, Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen
KG on being the villain: I could care less at 3:59 pm ET
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WALTHAM — Kevin Garnett knows that on Friday night in Miami he will be the the target of fans ire, and he said that he doesn’t really care.

“I don’€™t expect any of us to get any cheers down there and I’€™m no different from that,” Garnett said after the Celtics held a short practice Wednesday. “I’€™m not saying I’€™m the villain or the hero. I could care less. I’€™ve played on the road before. Hell I played in San Antonio and I know they hate me there for whatever reasons. So this should be no different. I could care less.”

Garnett, of course, was suspended for Game 2 after throwing an elbow at Miami’s Quentin Richardson late in the series opener. He watched the game at Danny Ainge’s house and praised Glen Davis for his energy. There’s a line between energy and being out of control and it’s one that Garnett straddles at times.

“I don’€™t know if Kevin can get more fired up for a game, that’€™s just who he is,” Doc Rivers said. “We want him to stay that way. It’€™s important for him to play with that edge. I think he’€™ll come out being the villain because I think he enjoys that anyway.”

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Paul Pierce/Glen Davis press conference at 3:26 am ET
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Paul Pierce and Glen Davis spoke to the media following the Celtics‘ 106-77 win over the Miami Heat. Davis, the self-proclaimed “Ticket Stub,” started in place for a suspended Kevin Garnett and had 23 points and eight rebounds. The win gave the Celtics a 2-0 lead in their opening-round playoff series.

Read More: Glen Davis, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce,
Doc Rivers press conference at 3:18 am ET
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Celtics coach Doc Rivers spoke to the media after the Celtics took a 2-0 series lead in the first round of the playoffs. The Celtics beat the Heat 106-77 at TD Garden without star forward Kevin Garnett.

Read More: Doc Rivers, Glen Davis, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce
Richardson won’t focus on crowd reaction 04.20.10 at 7:57 pm ET
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Quentin Richardson isn’t fooling himself — he doesn’t expect a warm response from the Garden crowd.

Prior to Game 2 between the Celtics and Heat, Richardson admitted he anticipates a backlash from the Celtics fans for his involvement in Saturday’s altercation with Kevin Garnett, which resulted in Garnett’s suspension.

“Probably so,” he said, adding, “No for me, I’€™m going out and playing basketball, playing to help my team win. Everything else will be outside the lines. When I’€™m inside the lines playing basketball, that’€™ll be what I’€™m focused on.”

The Heat will be focused on a new-look Celtics without Garnett in the lineup. Even though Garnett’s absence leaves a void on the Celtics, the replacement of Glen Davis has its benefits.

“It obviously changes a lot but with them probably going with Big Baby in the starting lineup, you get a younger, healthier guy,” Richardson said. “So I don’€™t know. It definitely changes because [Garnett’s] a huge part of their team, he’€™s an emotional leader, and at the same time he’€™s still Kevin Garnett. It obviously changes but they have a couple capable guys filling in in Rasheed (Wallace) and Davis.”

Regardless of whether Garnett or Davis are on the court for the Celtics, the Heat’s objective does not change. They look to accomplish their original goal of taking at least one game in Boston before heading home for Games 3 and 4.

“It’€™s just important for us to win tonight just to even up the series,” he said. “We want to go back to Miami 1-1 feeling good about ourselves and knowing that we’€™ve got two games on our home floor coming up.”

Read More: Boston Celtics, Glen Davis, Kevin Garnett, Miami Heat
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