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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I'll take this starting five over anybody else's

It's a very big if, since they're aging faster than the Jonas Brothers, but when the Boston Celtics' starting five is healthy and on the court, I like their chances against anybody else in the NBA.

After losing three straight, the C's got KG back and no surprise, won their second consecutive game last night 95-89 over the Clippers.

It wasn't a pretty win since the game was delayed multiple times because of a slippery court (somewhere Red is smiling) but it was nice to get some revenge after the Celts lost in LA a few weeks ago on Baron Davis's buzzer-beater.

The defensive presence that Garnett brings is immeasurable but something which is not talked about ad-nauseum with him is how much he opens up the passing game for Boston offensively.

Paul Pierce led Boston (29-13) with a game-high 22 points, Garnett added 17 points and Rajon Rondo notched 16 points, 12 assists, seven rebounds and four steals. Ray Allen scored 15 and Kendrick Perkins posted nine points and 15 rebounds.

The Clippers (20-24) had six guys in double figures but nobody went off. Rasual Butler (who was a Celtic for about a minute) led LA with 17 points, Davis had 16 points and seven assists, Al Thornton added 12 points and Chris Kaman had 10 points and nine rebounds.

Former BC star Craig Smith (who could be a good NBA player if he got consistent minutes) scored 13 points off the bench and former Celtic bozo Ricky Davis added 12 points and two blunts smoked on the bench.

The Clippers led 19-17 after the first quarter and 44-43 at the half. Reversing their recent trend, the C's played well in the third quarter (21-15) and made enough plays in the fourth (31-30) to hold off the talented but helter skelter Clippers.

After a couple days of practice, Boston embarks on what I would nominate for the toughest four day stretch in the NBA this season: at Orlando on Thursday, at Atlanta on Friday and home against the Lakers on Sunday afternoon. They also go to the Wizards on Monday but we won't count that (please don't shoot me Gilbert, I'm just playing).