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The Early Lead
Posted at 02:24 PM ET, 05/02/2012

Paul Pierce scores 36 points to lift Celtics, then Tebows


That is soooooo 2011. (Tami Chappell - Reuters)
The Boston Celtics are once again one of the oldest teams in the NBA.

And old people are sometimes slow to pick up on the latest trends — or in this case, slow to drop them.

Playing without Ray Allen (injured) and Rajon Rondo (suspended) in Tuesday’s Game 2 in Atlanta, Paul Pierce turned in a performance that reminded everyone why he remains one of the game’s top stars.

The 34-year-old posted a season-high 36 points and pulled down 14 rebounds as the Celtics pulled away from the Hawks late for an 87-80 win to even their first-round series.

But then he did something so out-dated it even made Snooki snicker.

He Tebowed at center court.

“It wasn’t pre-scripted,” Pierce said after the game. “It just came to me.”

One can only hope the man they call “The Truth” was telling it, because the only thing worse than spontaneously Tebowing in 2012 is doing is staged Tebowing in 2012.

Just in case you’re wondering: “What should Pierce have done instead? Isn’t Tebowing the ultimate way to cap a big win?”... Yahoo’s Ball Don’t Lie has a handy list of alternative celebrations which could includes utilizing Jeremy Lin puns, rally squirreling and tolerating Zooey Deschanel. Here’s the full list.

Bumping a referee would have been a poor alternative, but after that, the list is quite short.

Nevertheless, the victory was a big one for a Celtics team playing without its point guard and top perimeter threat. Now Boston heads home with a split and the opportunity to take control of a series many expect will last a full seven games. And credit Pierce for delivering in the clutch yet again.

“The only way we were going to win a game like this without Ray and Rondo,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said, “was if Paul had a game like this.”

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