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Monday, March 7, 2011

His gross thinning hair could use a trim but Nenad Krstic can play for me any day

Listen, I love Kendrick Perkins but as I made abundantly clear in the aftermath of his trade to Oklahoma City, it was time to let the trade pan out before we make any conclusions.

That is still true, nothing will be settled until at least the playoffs when we see Nenad Krstic and Jeff Green play in games that really count. However, can we at least admit already that Krstic is way better than we all thought? Plus, Green's potential is huge with Rondo in his life and the unselfish ways of the Big Three.

The Celts (46-15) won their fifth straight, 89-83 over the Bucks (23-38) last night at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee.

Krstic had 17 points and Green added 11 points off the bench as Boston continued to survive despite a severe lack of healthy bodies (nine players dressed last night).

The Bucks have injury problems of their own, most notably with Andrew Bogut's large frame parked on the bench. As currently constituted, they're not very good but Brandon Jennings (23 points, six rebounds, five assists) is never an easy matchup when his shot is falling.

Paul Pierce scored 23 points, Kevin Garnett posted 14 points, 11 rebounds and three steals while Ray Allen notched 13 points in his return to his first NBA home (which nobody remembers). Rajon Rondo was held in check by Jennings as he only managed six points, eight assists but eight turnovers. No problem, Pitbull, I mean Carlos Arroyo was signed over the weekend.

The game wasn't sealed until there was less than 30 seconds left in the fourth. KG swatted a layup by Luc Richard Mbah a Moute (19 points), Paul Pierce converted an And-1 off an inbounds play (haha really) and that was it.

John Salmons (11 points) was the only other Buck in double figures for the offensively-challenged team.

Boston led 27-26 after the first quarter but Milwaukee found itself up 49-43 at halftime. The Celts woke up in the third quarter (26-16) and the defense won them this one with a strong fourth quarter (20-18).

Sasha Pavlovic memorably airballed his first shot as a Celtic but he made up for it with a big 3-pointer in the fourth. Troy Murphy is still looking for his first basket, all he's made is three free throws so far.

The Cs shot 51.5% to 41.3% for the Bucks. Milwaukee made three more 3-pointers (8-5) and grabbed six more rebounds (39-33). Boston dished out three more assists (23-20).

Delonte West could be back on Wednesday and Arroyo is expected in uniform when the Celtics host the Los Angeles Clippers at TD Garden.

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