10/27/09: Celtics spoil Cavs’ debut

ESPN: Shaquille O’Neal has learned the ropes in his 17 NBA seasons. There’s one lesson that has endured since he was a raw rookie.”You can’t win a championship in the first game,” he said.

Boston’s Big Three — plus Rasheed — spoiled Cleveland’s overhyped season opener on Tuesday night with a 95-89 win over the new-look Cavaliers, who may have LeBron James and Shaq but appear to be a long way from true title contenders.Paul Pierce scored 23 points, Ray Allen 16 and Kevin Garnett 13 in his first regular-season game since last March as the Celtics, overlooked by some this preseason, ended an 11-game losing streak in Cleveland and snapped a 16-game skid by visiting teams in games between the Eastern powers who figure to meet again sometime in May or June.”It was a good Day One,” Pierce said. “Psychologically, you want to go into a team’s building and win, especially in a place where we haven’t won in a few years. It’s great to come here and get a win. We know when we come here next time that we can do it again.”

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