Celtics (18-5) vs. Pistons (8-16)
December 4, 1979
The Celtics continued a brutal stretch of travel for their fifth game in the past seven nights to play a dreadful Detroit Pistons team. In front of a crowd of 11,839, the ninth largest crowd ever up to that point for a Pistons game, the Celtics had trouble finding any kind of shooting rhythm and turned the ball over a season high 20 times in the first half, but persevered to overcome a 15-point deficit in the fourth quarter and won, 118-114, in overtime. The Celtics flirted with disaster the entire night, but found a way to beat a poor Pistons club for the nineteenth victory of the year and improved to 2-0 in OT.
Dick Bavetta and Jim Capers officiated the contest, and Larry Bird did not disappoint. After only scoring four points in the loss to Kansas City, Bird bounced back with a customary Bird night — and customary implies the finest rookie play in the league that season — with 18 points, 12 rebounds (4 offe...