BOSTON — Alpha dog Kevin Garnett had two points in the second half of the Game 4 loss in Cleveland.
There are two words to describe those contributions:
Well, the Celtics' All-NBA forward trumped that outing with a special fourth-quarter performance with six points and more importantly eight rebounds over the final 10 minutes of the game.
Garnett finished with 26 points (12-of-19 shooting), 16 rebounds, four assists and three awe-inspiring blocked shots.
"More spacing helped KG tonight," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers. "Our spacing was bettter. We need to get him to the basket more. That is what we need to do, like when he went down the baseline for a dunk."
Rivers said he didn't have a special meeting with Garnett. Nothing had to be said.
"I trusted he would do enough talking to himself," said Rivers. "He cares so much, sometimes maybe too much, if that is possible."
Cavs coach Mike Brown said while Garnett had a great game around the basket, it was his jump shot that killed the Cavs in the 96-89 thriller.
"I can't remember any of them that he missed," said Brown. "He shook loose for some jump shots that he knocked down."
Big Baby has big game
Third-string center Glen "Big Baby" Davis was sent into the game in the third quarter to give the Celtics some quality minutes and some extra fouls. If he played four minutes, that would have been a bonus.
He played nearly 12 minutes before giving way to Kendrick Perkins in the fourth quarter.
While he scored only six points and pulled in only one rebound, his energy was apparently contagious.
He committed three fouls, two of which might have been considered flagrant if the game had been in Cleveland.
"We made a point at halftime to get the loose balls," said the rookie out of LSU. "The little things count also. It adds up. The playoffs are a great experience and I'm just waiting. That is my role. Everybody has a role on this team and that is one of my roles, to be ready when the time comes and to bring energy."
Jay-Z, Beyonce in the house
It was a star-studded faces in crowd last night with headliners Jay-Z, a world renowned rapper and music producer, and his wife, Beyonce.
The duo sat in the front row with an entourage and, of course, security.
Maybe Jay-Z was taking notes. He is a minority owner with the New Jersey Nets and close friends with LeBron James.
Also seen last night was former Celtic Antoine Walker and Patriots defensive end Richard Seymour.
Rob Lowe: I wants Celts-Lakers
That was actor Rob Lowe sitting behind Danny Ainge, three rows from the floor last night.
Lowe is in Boston for a movie which is starring Jennifer Garner, called "This Side of the Truth." Also in the movie are Jonah Hill, Tina Fey, Jeffrey Tambor, Jason Bateman and Patrick Stewart.
Lowe, a noted Los Angeles Lakers fan, said, believe it or not, he was rooting for the Celtics.
"I want a Celtics-Lakers final," said Lowe, who is flying back and forth to Los Angeles for his television role in "Brothers and Sisters."
"I love this place. The fans here are great."
Lowe was seen talking to Ainge a few times during the game.
"I love Danny. He is such a competitor, just like he was as a player," said Lowe, who last month was in North Andover filming. "Let's hope the Celts and Lakers meet again, for old times sake."
Lowe also had his camera, taking pictures of the action when it was nearby.
Head butt for Rondo
After a miss in the fourth quarter, Kevin Garnett held up the ball looking for Rajon Rondo, who was in front of him. Garnett finally saw the screaming Rondo, who couldn't be heard because of the crowd, and handed him the ball. Then he lightly gave his point guard a head butt, getting a loud cheer.
Allen slumps continues, but ...
The Celtics have survived another disappointing performance from one of the Big Three. Ray Allen scored 11 points, making only one of four 3-pointers.
An Allen turnover with 48 seconds was turned into a pair of free throws as the Cavs closed the gap to 91-87.
But when Kevin Garnett's long jump shot as the 24-second clock expired rimmed out, it was Allen who knocked the loose ball to Paul Pierce, who was fouled. Pierce made the free throws to basically finish off the Cavs.
Allen is averaging only 11.7 points in the seven playoff games played in May.
Celtics 96, Cavs 89
Turning point: The third quarter. The Celtics outscored the Cavs, 29-17. LeBron James was a non-factor for most of the quarter as the Celts were able to turn a 43-29 second-quarter deficit into a 49-48 lead on a Rajon Rondo jumper at 9:18 of the third quarter.
Cold Cav: LeBron James scored 23 points in the first half, but over the last 3:50 of the second quarter and 11:15 of the third quarter, he was held scoreless until a runner with 44.6 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Cold Cav II: Center Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored only six points on 2 of 5 shooting. "I just didn't get any open looks. So I didn't force any shots. I credit the Celtics."
Cold Celt: Center Kendrick Perkins had probably his worst game of the playoffs. He only took two shots, missing both, and had five rebounds in 28 minutes. He also had three turnovers, twice fumbling what appeared to be easy passes on top of the key.
Point of emphasis: The two starting point guards, Rajon Rondo and Delonte West, had career playoff performances. Rondo had 20 points and 13 assists while West scored 21 points and led all players with four steals, two in the final two minutes to make the game close.
Bench minor: The Celtics reserves continue their scoring struggles. They were outscored 36-17 in Game 4. Last night, they were outscored 13-9, with Glen "Big Baby" Davis leading the way with six points.
King James: LeBron James got off to slow scoring starts in the first four games. Not last night. James hit five of his first seven shots, scoring 11 points in just over eight minutes. He shot 12 of 25 on the night.
Sign of the times: The best sign in the stands was, "LeBron: Where is your momma tonight?" It drew a standing ovation when it was shown on the Jumbotron.
You don't say: James was asked if the Cavaliers, facing an elimination game in Cleveland tomorrow night, were desperate.
He apparently didn't appreciate the question: "A LeBron James team is never desperate."