Pietrus looks to build off Wednesday's performance


Pietrus looks to build off Wednesday's performance

TORONTO Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers liked what he saw out of Mickael Pietrus, who returned to the C's lineup on Wednesday after being out since March 23 because of a concussion.

He's looking for more of the same tonight when the Celtics face on the Toronto Raptors.

And like so many of the C's games this season, they will once again be short-handed with Ray Allen (ankle) out.

As for Pietrus, his play in Boston's 88-86 overtime win far exceeded Rivers' expectations both in terms of production (eight points, six rebounds) and minutes played (29). Pietrus was indeed a key player in the Celtics' victory, evident by the Celtics being plus-11 (that was the second-highest on the team) when he was on the floor against the Hawks.

"It's great to have him back," C's guard Avery Bradley told CSNNE.com. "He's a great shooter, great defender. Having him only makes us better, a tougher team to beat."

Said Rivers: "He looked good, he felt great. He said he felt normal. That's good."

While Pietrus told CSNNE.com following the win that he had put in extra work conditioning his body so that he wouldn't be too winded once he returned, look for him to continue to get in extra conditioning work between now and the playoffs.

"He worked out a little bit more yesterday, trying to get his legs back in playing shape," Rivers said. "I think these next three games will help that."

After tonight's game at Toronto, the C's play at New Jersey on Saturday and at Charlotte on Sunday.

"It's good to have him back," Rivers said.

Royer's late goal rallies Red Bulls past Revolution, 2-1


Royer's late goal rallies Red Bulls past Revolution, 2-1

HARRISON, N.J. - Daniel Royer finished a nice sequence in the 74th minute, Luis Robles made a diving save in the closing minutes and the New York Red Bulls rallied to beat the New England Revolution 2-1 on Saturday night.

Felipe sent the ball left to Kemar Lawrence alongside the box and he put a cross to Royer on the back post for an easy finish on his fourth goal.

Robles, who only allowed Lee Nguyen's penalty kick in the ninth minute, preserved the win with his fourth save, diving to his left to block Diego Fagundez's shot from outside the box.

Bradley Wright-Phillips tied it for New York (6-6-2), which was winless in its last four matches, when he pounced on a loose ball and backheeled it into the net. New England goalkeeper Cody Cropper had pounced on a cross by Kemar Lawance, but Cropper could hold on and Wright-Phillips was there to clean up for his sixth goal.

Damien Perrinelle fouled Fagundez in the penalty area after a great pass from Kei Kamara, allowing Nguyen to step up for his sixth goal. New England (4-5-4) had won two straight and lost just one of its previous six. It is 0-5-2 on the road.