Paul Pierce scored 20 points and added nine assists in the Celtics' victory on Friday.
Boston 107, L.A. Lakers 94
BOSTON, Nov. 23 (AP) -- All the indications of the 1980s were there: The Celtics and Lakers on the parquet, a full house chanting "Beat L.A.!'' and even a clip of an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie on the scoreboard.
The real Schwarzenegger was sitting courtside on Friday night watching Boston and Los Angeles renew their rivalry - one of the perks of being governor of California. And the NBA's fiercest foes from the '80s showed that they have a chance for a pretty good second act, too.
"I could see it on the people's faces in the building,'' Ray Allen said after Boston won 107-94 in his first game for the Celtics against the Lakers. "They were very rabid about this game and the history that follows these two franchises. It was great for me to be a part of it.''
Kevin Garnett scored 21 points with 11 rebounds, and Kendrick Perkins had 21 and nine for Boston, which improved to 10-1 overall and 7-0 at home. Paul Pierce had 20 points and nine assists, Allen scored 18 points and Rajon Rondo had 10 assists for the Celtics.
Kobe Bryant scored 28 points for Los Angeles, which got no help from having Schwarzenegger in the crowd with his wife, Maria Shriver. Instead, the Celtics fired up the crowd for the renewal of the rivalry by putting a muscle-bound clip of Schwarzenegger's movie "Predator'' on the scoreboard.
"Starting to bring celebrities out,'' said Pierce, who grew up in the Los Angeles area as a Lakers fan who hated the Celtics. "That's what I like.''
The Lakers scored eight straight points in the fourth quarter to get within single digits, 94-85, with 4:53 left. But Bryant missed one free throw at 96-86, and Perkins muscled his way to the basket at the other end, then got the rebound after putting a hand in Andrew Bynum's face.
Rondo hit Allen to set up a 3-pointer that made it 15 points. The Lakers cut it to 101-91, but Rondo found Garnett for the jumper, then Allen was fouled on the breakaway and hit both free throws with 52 seconds left to make it a 14-point game.
"That was probably the only time between the beginning of the first six minutes and the end of the game that we felt like we were in it,'' Lakers coach Phil Jackson said.
Bryant was booed often by the crowd, which even mustered a "Beat L.A.!'' chant reminiscent of the days when the old Boston Garden and the old Big Three of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish seemed to host the Lakers in the NBA finals every summer.
Those Celtics and the Lakers of Magic Johnson, James Worthy and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar dominated the NBA: From '80-88, the two rivals won all but one of the nine NBA championships -- three for Boston, five for Los Angeles (one for the Philadelphia 76ers) -- and met for the title three times in four years.
"Rivalries are made are made in the playoffs and in finals,'' Pierce said. "Lakers and Celtics is always going to be talked about throughout the history of the game because of the great rivalry we had in the '80s.''
But it hasn't been much to talk about lately.
The Celtics missed the playoffs for six consecutive seasons from 1996-2001, while the Lakers were building a mini-dynasty under Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal. Los Angeles won three straight titles from 2000-02; the Celtics lost in the '02 Eastern Conference finals and missed a chance to renew the rivalry with the Lakers for the title.
The Lakers won both meetings last season, when the Celtics were more interested in landing the top pick in the NBA draft, and seven of the last 10 overall.
"Since I've been in the league, they've (stunk),'' Bryant said. "Now they're kicking our butts. Hopefully we will get to the point where there's some parity between us and them. It means we're competing on a championship level.''
The Celtics went out to an early lead, and they did it with a little showtime.
Boston led 15-10 before scoring eight straight points, getting an alley-oop dunk from Pierce to Garnett followed by Pierce's steal and fast-break layup. Pierce then sent Allen on a fast break to give the Celtics a 23-10 lead with 3:05 left in the first.
The Lakers brought it down to five points before Boston scored 10 in a row to make it 40-25 midway through the second quarter. The Celtics took the lead to 22 points in the third and never by less than nine in the fourth.
Bryant scored eight points in the first quarter but missed his only shot in the second.
Notes: In the first quarter, Pierce became the ninth player in Celtics history to play over 25,000 minutes. The other eight have all had their numbers retired by the team, and all but Jo Jo White are in the Hall of Fame. John Havlicek is the team's career leader with 46,471. ... Ray Allen surpassed the 30,000 minute milestone for his career and is 103rd in NBA history. ... Other celebrities in the crowd: Grey's Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo; former Celtic and Laker Rick Fox and New England Patriots defensive lineman Richard Seymour.