The Celtics rode a monster second quarter in which they outscored the Kings by 23 to coast to an easy win over the still-in-Sacramento Kings. The Celtics did exactly what they needed to do without Rajon Rondo… get defensive stops, push the tempo, and get to the rim. The Celtics had lulls for the second part of the first quarter and pretty much all of the fourth quarter, but they dominated the rest of the way. The final score 99-81 of was much closer than this game actually was.
That second quarter was an utter domination. It was, for lack of a better term, pretty. As I said on Twitter, it’s a bit ironic that the best strategy for the Celtics, after losing one of the fastest guys in the league, is to push the ball more, but that’s just how it is.
Jason Terry had one of his best shooting nights of the season (his third-best shooting night of the season, specifically). He shot 5-7 for the third time this year. He twice shot 6-8.
The half court offense, as expected, was pretty terrible. We can debate about how much the Celtics relied on Rondo to a fault, but the fact is he created whatever meager offense the Celtics mustered in half court sets. When the Celtics relaxed, or when they couldn’t push off of stops, they were not good at all.
Speaking of which, I’ll toss the “attitude after they got up big” here too. After nearly pushing the lead to 28, the C’s let off the gas. Seeing Kevin Garnett on the floor more than halfway through the 4th quarter of what should have been a massacre did not please me.
Jared Sullinger left after 4:08 of play with back spasms. NOT, what you want to hear right now. Neither is this
#Celtics coach Doc Rivers on Jared Sullinger’s back: it’s just something we manage, he may miss games from time to time.
— Scott Souza (@scott_souza) January 31, 2013
Avery Bradley with the chase-down block
Kevin Garnett all panties [(c) KWAPT] to beat the shot clock
Leandro alley, Garnett oop
- Six Celtics scored in double figures (Pierce-16, Garnett-13, Green-Terry-Bass-12 each, Bradley-11).
- After 6 first quarter turnovers, the Celtics only had 10 the rest of the way.
- Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 10 rebounds.
- Kevin Garnett led the Celtics with 5 assists. Pierce & Terry had 4 each.
They looked great for a while, they looked crappy for a while. But they blew out a bad team, and they’re figuring out how to move on without Rondo. The fact is, Rondo helped a lot, and he hurt some things too. But there’s enough talent on this team to do OK in the regular season. The playoffs… well….. let’s just enjoy this win, OK?