Paul Pierce scored 16 of his 23 points in the second half and Kevin Garnett added 17 points and four blocks Friday night as the Boston Celtics nearly blew a 17-point lead before pulling away late in a 103-91 victory over the Houston Rockets.
The Celtics extended their season-high winning streak to five games, but only after surviving a 12-0 run that pulled the Rockets within two points midway through the fourth quarter.
Rajon Rondo finished with 12 points and eight assists for the Celtics. Courtney Lee and Jared Sullinger scored 14 apiece, and Sullinger also had 11 rebounds for his second straight double-double.
James Harden scored 24 and Chandler Parsons added 18 for Houston, which fell to 0-2 during a three-game road trip that concludes Saturday in Philadelphia.
The Rockets had won five straight and 10 of 12 before starting the trip with a loss at New Orleans on Wednesday. After struggling through the first three quarters, Houston put together one big surge in the fourth quart...