Boston Forward Evan Turner’s running shot just before the final buzzer broke Atlanta hearts on Wednesday, lifting the lowly Celtics to an 89-88 NBA victory over the high-flying Hawks.
Turner’s stunner gave the Celtics their only lead of the game with two-tenths of a second to play, an astonishing turnaround for the hosts who trailed by as many as 18 and connected on just 32 percent of their shots from the field.
Atlanta, playing their last game before the All-Star break, appeared on their way to becoming the fifth team in league history to win 44 games before the annual mid-season exhibition.
But Boston rallied behind the 17 points and 15 rebounds of Jared Sullinger, rookie Marcus Smart’s seven fourth-quarter points and Turner’s game-winner.
Al Horford finished with 22 points and 12 rebounds and fellow All-Star Jeff Teague added 10 points and eight assists for Atlanta.
The defeat saw Atlanta’s club record streak of 13 straight wins against Eastern Conference rivals end.
Western Conference leaders Golden State will take the best record in the league into the All-Star break after a close-run 94-91 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Stephen Curry scored 25 points for the Warriors, despite connecting on just nine of his 23 shots from the field.
Curry handed out eight assists, Klay Thompson had 14 points and Leandro Barbosa and Andrew Bogut scored 10 points apiece for Golden State.
Australia’s Bogut also pulled down 10 rebounds for the Warriors, who have won three straight to push their record to 42-9. – Agence France-Presse