Magic:113 Celtics:92 Series Celtics Lead 3-2.
ORLANDO (NBA.com exclusive) -- It was a brutal night for Boston's big guys in the Celtics' 113-92 loss to the Orlando Magic in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.
Starting center Kendrick Perkins was ejected in the first half, forward Glen Davis suffered a concussion in the second half and Rasheed Wallace fouled out with 4:49 left in the game. Wallace also "tweaked his back," according to Boston coach Doc Rivers.
Jameer Nelson scored a game-high 24 points for the Magic and led their first successful 3-point parade of the series.
Dwight Howard added 21 points, 10 rebounds and another dominating defensive effort that included five blocks.
"At this point we believe we can win the series," Nelson said. "We have to stay humble and keep focused and remember how we won these last two games. I believe they have pressure on them right now, but they have veteran players with Hall of Famers and a great coach."
The Celtics still lead the series, three games to two.
Game 6 will be played Friday night in Boston, where the Magic have won four of their last five, including Monday night's overtime victory.
"We need to win one game, and let's hope it's the next one," Rivers said. "If it takes coming back here, we'll be ready for that, too. But we'd like to do the next one."
If they don't win either game, the Celtics will become the first team in NBA history to lose a playoff series after winning the first three games.
It is questionable whether they will have either Perkins or Davis for Game 6.
Perkins was automatically ejected after getting his second technical foul with 36.1 seconds left in the first half. Perhaps more significantly, it was Perkins' seventh technical of the postseason, which calls for a one-game suspension unless one of the technicals is rescinded by the league.
"I didn't think he deserved either one, but he got them," Rivers said. "I did think once Eddie Rush realized he called [the second technical], he couldn't rescind the tech because he forgot they had given him the other one."
After taking a Howard elbow to the face in the final seconds of the third quarter, Davis fell to the floor and stayed down for a few seconds as the action went to the other end of the court. Then he got up and wobbled to halfcourt before falling into the hands of referee Joey Crawford.
He was taken to the locker room, where Dr. Brian McKeon diagnosed a concussion.
"We're just trying to win," said Howard, who considers Davis a good friend. "Our intention is not to hurt anybody out there, but basketball is a very physical sport."
The Magic turned the ball over the first three times they had it and fell behind 5-0. Vince Carter and Lewis got the Magic going with 3-pointers, setting the stage for Orlando's biggest offensive game of the series by far.
Six different shooters combined to make eight of the Magic's first 12 3-pointers, and they shot 13-for-25 for the game.
"We're attacking more, making them shut down the paint and getting it to our shooters," said Nelson, who made 4-of-5. "We're playing more of our game now."
J.J. Redick's long, moving 3-pointer gave Orlando a 47-35 lead late in the first half.
Paul Pierce hit four straight free throws and a 3-pointer to help the Celtics trim the lead to eight by halftime, and Rajon Rondo's layup made it 57-51 at the outset of the second half.
But the Celtics never got any closer.
With Howard and Nelson on the bench, Rashard Lewis scored the Magic's first seven points of the fourth quarter. Lewis and Redick finished with 14 points each, but Magic coach Stan Van Gundy gave most of the credit to the leadership of Howard and Nelson.
"People talk all the time about leadership and guys talking in the locker room and all that," Van Gundy said. "I'm not saying there's anything wrong with that, but what leads your teammates is playing that hard and people follow along. That's leadership, and I think both of those guys, as our captains, came with great energy and great, great toughness, and that is he leadership you need.
"It's OK if you want to say something, too, but a lot of people talk. It's about playing that hard and that well."
Wallace led the Celtics with 21 points, including 10 straight before fouling out. Pierce had 16 of his 18 points in the first half.