BOSTON (AP) — Rajon Rondo had 11 points and a season-high 18 assists, Jeff Green scored 27 points and the Boston Celtics had their second-highest scoring output of the season in a 118-111 win over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night.
Kris Humphries added a season-high 20 points, including two free throws with 25 seconds left to help Boston seal the win after the Pistons closed to 113-109. Humphries also led Boston with 11 rebounds.
Jerryd Bayless scored 15 points, Kelly Olynyk added 18 and Jared Sullinger 14 for the Celtics.
Josh Smith had 28 points and 11 rebounds for the Pistons and was one of three Detroit players with double-doubles. Andre Drummond had 18 points and 22 rebounds and Greg Monroe finished with 22 points and 14 boards. Will Bynum added 18 points off the bench for the Pistons.
Detroit controlled the game inside with 54 rebounds to Boston’s 39 and outscored the Celtics 64-44 in the paint, but couldn’t overcome 16 turnovers and Boston’s outside shooting. The Celtics shot 15 for 22 in the third quarter, including eight 3-pointers, in their highest scoring game since beating Orlando 120-105 on Nov. 11.
Boston also had a season-high 38 assists and beat the Pistons for the first time in three meetings this season.
Detroit had rallied from 21-points down to win in Boston on Dec. 18, but the Celtics were able to hold off the Pistons each time they rallied down the stretch this time.
After going 2 for 14 from 3-point range in the first half, the Celtics made five from beyond-the-arc in the first 6 minutes of the third quarter.
Smith pulled Detroit to 69-63 on a 3-pointer with 7:27 left in the period, the Green made back-to-back 3s followed by another from Bayless to stretch Boston’s lead to 78-63. The Celtics finished the period with eight 3s and led 95-84 entering the fourth.
Monroe’s three-point play with 9:28 remaining cut Boston’s lead to 97-89, then Bynum pulled up for a jumper on a fast break to get the Pistons within six.
Detroit stayed within reach and pulled to 113-109 on two free throws by Bynum, but the Pistons had to foul and Humphries sealed it by making two from the line.
The Celtics shot 50 percent in the second quarter and led by 13, but Detroit closed the half on a 9-2 run to pull within 57-49 at the break.
NOTES: Drummond’s 45 double-doubles are most for a Detroit player since Isiah Thomas had 47 in 1985-86. … Humphries’ previous high this season was 19 points. … Rondo reached 4,101 career assists, passing Bill Russell (4,100) for fifth place in team history. … Boston finished with just seven turnovers.