BOSTON — Ray Allen made his first shot of the game, then kept missing like it was Game 3 all over again.
Until the fourth quarter.
That's when he and four reserves helped the Boston Celtics beat the Los Angeles Lakers 96-89 and even the NBA finals at two wins each Thursday night.
And when it was over, Allen led his teammates through the tunnel and toward their locker room, slapping palms with fans as Tony Allen followed with both hands on his revived teammate's shoulders.
With the Lakers leading 64-62, Ray Allen tied the game when he drove the baseline from the right side and made a reverse layup with 10:31 left. Then, after Glen Davis hit a layup, Allen connected from the free throw line for a 68-64 lead.
It was 71-66 when he passed the ball to Tony Allen for a layup that put the Celtics up by seven points with 7:46 remaining.
The shooting guard who set a finals record with eight 3-pointers in Game 2, then had the worst shooting game of his career by missing all 13 shots in Los Angeles' 91-84 win in Game 3, was contributing again.
But not until a long dry spell for much of the game.
Allen made a layup for Boston's first basket exactly one minute into the game.
Then he missed his other five shots in the half as the Lakers led 45-42 at halftime.
He didn't score again until making a 20-footer with 4:24 to play in the third quarter and ended the period having missed six of his eight shots for the game.
But in the fourth quarter, he went 2 for 3, ending his 12-point night on a high note.
For the game, he was 4 for 11 with five rebounds, one assist and a steal.