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Monday, January 12, 2009

Thank you Canada: for your crappy basketball team and your 18+ drinking age

Ray Allen almost single-handily ended the Celtics' four game losing streak and tailspin (seven losses in their last nine) as he delivered a season-high 36 points yesterday afternoon in a 94-88 win over the Raptors at the Air Canada Centre.

As shooters (and pretty girls) are known to do, Ray has been rather erratic lately. He came out on fire though (hitting five 3-pointers in the first quarter) and shot 11 for 14 in the game, 8 of 10 on threes.

The Celts (30-9) needed all those points as a game that they led by 20 in the third quarter got close in the fourth. One of Boston's biggest issues during this rough patch has been their lack of closing power in fourth quarters. Toronto (16-22) cut it to five with 1:30 left in the fourth but they ran out of gas.

Rajon Rondo had 14 points, 11 assists and six rebounds in the win. Paul Pierce added 11 points, six rebounds and six assists while Kevin Garnett notched 10 points (3 of 16 shooting) and 11 rebounds.

Glen Davis played 30 minutes since Kendrick Perkins was out with a shoulder injury. Big Baby was a brutal 1 of 12 from the floor but he did grab 11 boards.

If you're facing the Raptors and Andrea Bargnani is their leading scorer, you're probably in good shape. The former top pick, had a team-high 17 points and nine rebounds. Jamario Moon (15 points, 7 rebounds) and Chris Bosh (15 points, 11 rebounds, 3 blocks) were the other bright spots for Toronto.

Jason Kapono and Joey Graham both scored 12 off the bench.

In a strange scheduling quirk, Toronto comes to the Garden tonight as the Celtics try to build off yesterday's uneven but ultimately decent performance.