The Boston Celtics won the battle of the NBA's best on Wednesday with a thrilling 105-103 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.
Ray Allen scored a game-high 31 points for the Celtics, who led 105-96 with less than a minute left but needed a Paul Pierce block as time expired to fend off the charging Spurs.
San Antonio ran off seven successive points in the final seconds to pull within two but Manu Ginobili's 24-footer was blocked by Pierce.
Ginobili finished with a team-high 24 points for the Spurs (29-6), who lost consecutive games for the first time this season.
Playing in his third game back from injury, point guard Rajon Rondo recorded a triple-double with 12 points, 22 assists and 10 rebounds to help Boston (27-7) win their third game in a row.