|Date of game: 4/26/2012
Recap: Boston vs. Milwaukee
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Avery Bradley led the way with 14 points, as the Atlantic Division-champion Boston Celtics topped Milwaukee, 87-74, in the season-finale for both teams at TD Garden.
Paul Pierce left the game briefly with a toe injury, but returned and netted 12 points for the Celtics (39-27), who ended the regular season having won five of their last seven.
Rajon Rondo was held scoreless, but dished out a game-high 15 assists as Boston finished with the No. 4 seed but lost homecourt advantage to Atlanta in the first round because the Hawks beat Dallas and finished with one more win.
"It would've been easier to open up at home, but we're just not," said Boston head coach Doc Rivers.
Tobias Harris totaled 16 points and nine rebounds, while Jon Leuer added 15 and eight boards for the Bucks (31-35), who lost five of seven and will not participate in the postseason.
"They took us out of what we wanted to run," said Milwaukee head coach Scott Skiles. "We had to start over dribbling a little bit and just had great difficulty with getting any baskets."
Brandon Jennings tossed in 12 points for Milwaukee.
Bradley had six points in the opening quarter and helped the Celts take a 21-18 lead after one quarter. The hosts scored the first six points of the game, led 8-2 early on and never trailed. Their lead swelled as high as 18-10 after Bradley's trey with 5:20 remaining.
Comfortably ahead for the entire second period, Boston took a 60-42 lead to the locker room thanks to a late 15-8 run. Pierce posted seven points in the burst and Brandon Bass capped the spurt with a jumper.
An alley-oop jam from Rondo to Ryan Hollins saw the Celtics' advantage stand at 66-46 with 7:54 remaining in the third, and Sasha Pavlovic's bucket late in the period made it 78-61 heading into the fourth.
With starters resting on both sides, the final 12 minutes featured just 22 combined points, 13 to the Bucks. Milwaukee never got closer than 13 the rest of the way.Game Notes
The Celtics posted the second consecutive three-game season-series sweep of the Bucks and have won eight of the last 10 meetings since the start of the 2009-10 campaign...Boston center Kevin Garnett shot 1-for-6 from the field in just over 11 minutes and ended with four points...Mike Dunleavy came off the bench to score 10 points for Milwaukee.