Even with forward Anthony Davis playing sensational, the New Orleans Pelicans had been unable to break the habit of blowing late fourth-quarter leads in their past two games.

On Sunday, the Pelicans almost experienced the same setback. But after getting forced into overtime by the Boston Celtics, they escaped with a narrow 121-120 victory behind Davis' career-high 40 points and 21-rebound performance at the Smoothie King Center.

The game wasn't decided until the Pelicans (27-39) were able to run out the clock on their final possession after Celtics forward Jeff Green was fouled by forward Al-Farouq Aminu on a driving shot. Green made a free throw with 5.7 seconds remaining to cut the Pelicans' lead to one, but it was the closest the Celtics would get. Shooting guard Eric Gordon made two free throws with 9.4 seconds remaining in overtime that gave the Pelicans a 121-117 lead before the Celtics cut it to one.

For Davis, it was his sixth consecutive game scoring 28 or more points, a franchise record. And it was the seventh time this season Davis has scored at least 30 points and he's averaged 32.3 points over the past six games.

''I think he can do this 10 to 15 times a year because he is so gifted and does things for the right reason,'' said Pelicans coach Monty Williams, whose team equaled their win total from last season when they went 27-55.

''Obviously he has great athletic ability but some of that stuff is just him. We try to put him in a position where he can be a dominant player. When you go for those kind of numbers (40 points and 21 rebounds) that's a lot of God-given talent.