More than the blowout victory, more than the C’s answering the bell after the off-game against the Wizards on Saturday, more than the Cavs suffering their 18th consecutive loss, the return of Kendrick Perkins – and the reunification of the Celtics starting five – is the story for Celtics fans tonight.
Perkins saw his first 17 minutes of game action since blowing out his knee in game six of the 2010 NBA finals. After entering the game to a standing ovation with 8:02 left in the first quarter, Perkins tallied 7 points, 6 rebounds (3 offensive) and 3 assists and looked lean and strong throughout the game. His addition to the C’s rebounding corps, again down Shaquille O’Neal tonight, is going to make a huge difference for this team.
We also saw Rajon Rondo on the court for 44 inexplicable minutes tonight, many of them long after the outcome was no longer in doubt, making many of us wonder what exactly Doc Rivers was trying to do to his starting point guard. Paul Pierce, too, had a big game with 17 first quarter points before cruising home with 24 for the game, in the same number of minutes.
Hayes is back later for the full recap but in the meantime, enjoy this C’s win and return of #43.