Paul Pierce knocked down the free throws to clinch it, then dropped to a knee near midcourt.

He wasn't planning on Tebowing, but it just felt right.

Pierce battled through a tough shooting night to score 36 points and the Boston Cel- tics wiped out Atlanta's 11-point lead in the second half, stunning the Hawks 87-80 on Tuesday in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference series.

Boston heads home for Game 3 on Friday night tied 1-1. Rajon Rondo will be back for the Celtics in that one, his short-handed team having claimed the home-court edge even while he served a one-game suspension for bumping a ref in the postseason opener.