Rajon Rondo and the Boston Celtics beat the Chicago Bulls 101-96 on Monday. Rondo extended his assist streak to 31 games (10 or more assists per game). The record is 37 by John Stockton. Rondo at point guard just missed the triple-double as he posted 10 assists, 20 points and 9 rebounds. It was a good night for the guy who has become Boston’s most consistent player and for a team that has struggled to win games.
Boston Over .500
The victory put the Celtics record at 4-3. It is the first time that Boston has posted a winning mark in the young 2012-2013 NBA season. Rondo, who leads the NBA with an average of 12.9 APG, hit 56% from the court and was instrumental in the Celtics pushing their lead to a dozen points by the end of the third quarter.
After the game, Rondo noted, “We played pretty well offensively. Besides the turnovers I had, we took pretty good care of the ball. We got out on the break, kept it simple offensively.”
It was a solid team effort as Brandon Bass led the Celtics with 16 points and Kevin Garnett hit for 15. Paul Pierce had an off night, knocking in just 10 points as he went 4-13 from the court.
Where Are the Cs?
Boston has won 2 straight and have won 3 on the road. Their point differential stands at -1.6 as they are averaging 97.3 PPG while allowing 98.9. They sit 1.5 games out of first and are tied for third with the 76ers. At this point, they are looking average but showing the potential to be extraordinary.
The game against the Bulls offered some good signs regarding this Boston team. The first is the fact that they won when Pierce had an off night. The fact that Bass stepped up is very important and Rondo’s ongoing fine play is great news. The true test of a team is their ability to perform well despite the fact that one of their essential players is struggling. The Celtics are leading the NBA in assists with 25 per game. Good ball movement always pays off in this league.
Boston next plays the Utah Jazz (4-4). That game will feature the run-and-gun Jazz against the smooth playing, passing Celtics. It’s an interesting matchup. Boston will have to slow down the Jazz and play for the inside shot when they have the ball. The Celtics will be looking for their second Garden win of this very young season.