The Celtics started off on an even keel, working hard on the boards while Rondo provided most of the early offense. Boston held a 10-9 edge until Ray Allen canned a three, kicking off a 10-2 run.
The home squad sustained that momentum, and it was 31-21 at the end of the first quarter.
The pace picked up in the second, with the Celtics once again controlling the tempo. Both clubs had problems making shots, though, with Boston relying on a barrage of three balls to keep its edge.
Pierce sandwiched an Allen trey with two of his own in the final minutes, and it was 55-37 at the break.
Boston’s lead continued to grow in the third quarter, and it was 72-47 on a Pierce trey at 6:15.
The game was never in doubt from that point. The Celtics carried a 79-58 cushion into the fourth, and the starters mostly enjoyed the rest of the game from the bench.
Kevin Garnett finished with 12 points for Boston, while Ray Allen ended with 11. Tony Allen and Sam Cassell had 10 apiece in the win.