The Boston Celtics beat the Toronto Raptors (2-7) yesterday 107-89 as Rajon Rondo notched 20 assists and Jason Terry 20 points. The Celts are now 6-4 and Rondo is four games away from tying John Stockton’s straight-game mark of 10-plus assists, which stands at 37. Stockton’s record is second best to Magic Johnson’s all-time mark of 46 games. It was the second time this season that Rondo had 20 assists as the point guard played for the first time after one missing game due to a sprained ankle.
Plenty of Scoring
The Celtics were hot, hitting .566 from the floor, .400 from the three-point mark and .789 from the free throw line. Along with Terry’s 20, Paul Pierce was good for 19 points and Kevin Garnett for 15. Power forward Jared Sullinger came off the bench to have a solid game with 12 points and some significant plays around the basket.
Sullinger led the team in offensive rebounds (OREBs) with 4 and in total rebounds with 7. Although the Celtics didn’t have many OREBs (7 total), that was not a huge concern as it was partly due to the fact that the team hit so many of their first shots. Shooting guard Courtney Lee also contributed significantly with 4 points, 4 assists and 3 rebounds, while power forward Chris Wilcox came in to score 8 and grab 2 OREBs.
After the game, Rondo commented, “Something I look forward to every game is just trying to make my teammates happy. And somehow I keep getting to 10. Tonight it was a collective team effort as far as assists.” He also critiques himself, saying, “I’m making some OK passes — just taking what the defense gives me. It means my teammates are making shots.”
The Toronto defense gave Rondo and his teammates a lot, as they played a marginal game. The Celtics had a lot of open shots and were able to move the ball around the court with ease.
Hopefully the Celtics won’t have a letdown going from this blowout against a weak team to playing the next day, on the road against another weak club—the Detroit Pistons. It would be a great confidence builder to see Boston spin another massive win in their Motown game. The Celtics are really starting to do a lot of things right.