Jeff Green scored 34 points, including a 3-pointer with 45 seconds left to snap Boston's two-minute scoring drought, and the Celtics clinched a playoff berth by beating the Detroit Pistons 98-93 on Wednesday night.
Paul Pierce and Brandon Bass scored 17 apiece for the Celtics, who had lost two in a row and seven of their previous nine. But the victory, coupled with Philadelphia's 88-83 loss to the Charlotte Bobcats, left Boston 8 1/2 games ahead of the 76ers with eight games to play.
It's the sixth consecutive season Boston has reached the playoffs since the New Big Three was assembled in the summer of 2007.
Greg Monroe had 24 points and 17 rebounds and Rodney Stuckey scored 22 for the Pistons.
The Celtics led by as many as 18 points before the Pistons scored the final 11 points of the third quarter and opened the fourth with Jonas Jerebko's three-point play. Boston went into another scoring slump late in the fourth, going 2 minutes, 9 seconds without a point while Detroit cut a...