NBA: Boston 87, Atlanta 80

May 1, 2012 at 10:57 PM

ATLANTA, May 1 (UPI) -- Paul Pierce had 36 points and 14 rebounds Tuesday, helping the Boston Celtics beat Atlanta 87-80 in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.

Kevin Garnett added 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Celtics, who won despite the absence of Rajon Rondo (one-game suspension) and Ray Allen (ankle injury).

Avery Bradley, subbing for Rondo at point guard, chipped in with 14 points as Boston evened its best-of-seven series at one win apiece.

The Hawks lost despite 22 points from Joe Johnson and 18 from Jeff Teague.

Atlanta's Josh Smith left the game late in the fourth quarter with a left knee sprain.

The two teams will meet Friday in Boston for Game 3.

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