Ray Allen scored 18 points and Kevin Garnett had 16 as the two newcomers who led the Boston Celtics to the NBA's best record sparked them to a 104-81 win last night in their playoff opener against the Atlanta Hawks. Rookie Al Horford led the Hawks with 20 points and 10 rebounds and Joe Johnson added 19 points.
Garnett had skipped two days of practice for personal reasons before rejoining his teammates Saturday. He didn't miss a beat. Playing in his first playoff series in four years, the former Minnesota star had 10 rebounds. When he left with 3:26 remaining in the game, fans chanted "MVP, MVP." Paul Pierce scored 16 for Boston and Rajon Rondo had 15.