|Kevin Garnett, PF 29 MIN | 5-9 FG | 4-4 FT | 10 REB | 2 AST | 14 PTS | +26
A high energy KG submitted a double-double on top of stealing the ball five times and blocking two shots. Also quarterbacked an absurd defensive effort from the undermanned Celtics.
|Paul Pierce, SF 33 MIN | 6-14 FG | 6-6 FT | 5 REB | 7 AST | 19 PTS | +23
Another remarkable night for Pierce who has his swagger back and whose results on the offensive end are now matching his efforts. Remains a valuable creator on offense when Rondo’s out of the game. Doesn’t appear to be interested in being traded.
|Jermaine O’Neal, C 18 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +5
JO neutralized Dwight Howard, took several hard charges and competed hard in 18 rough minutes. Nothing from him on offense, but that’s par for the course and, tonight, irrelevant.
|Sasha Pavlovic, SF 34 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 9 PTS | +20
Pavlovic came out of nowhere to play some superb defense and lay down some hard fouls to prevent layups. If we were grading solely on his performance versus expectations, he’d get whatever’s a level above the A he rightfully earned.
|Avery Bradley, SG 29 MIN | 2-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 6 PTS | +21
A bounceback effort for Bradley after a bad game against Washington. His ball pressure completely undid Jameer Nelson, who was a disaster and while Bradley’s passing remains suspect, the rest of his game is rounding into shape. He’s making better decisions on offense, and can get up and down the floor like nobody else on this team (besides Rondo). A world of difference from the player we saw only two weeks ago.
|Marquis Daniels, SG 29 MIN | 3-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 8 PTS | +19
Daniels had his best game of the year on both sides of the court. Made a bunch of smart plays on offense on the way to 5 assists and played his share of smothering defense. He needed a game like this. Let’s see if he can build on it.
|Brandon Bass, PF 34 MIN | 8-14 FG | 3-3 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 19 PTS | +23
Bass was (broken record) terrific and (surprisingly) he got it done on both sides of the ball.
|Greg Stiemsma, C 10 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | +1
He’s got no feel on offense because he’s been sitting so much. But he did his job, which was to lay down a few fouls and play his part in the team defense.
|JaJuan Johnson, F 4 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 4 PTS | +5
A nice jam, and a few more minutes of run.
|E’Twaun Moore, G 19 MIN | 2-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 6 PTS | +12
His shooting has been terrible lately, but his defense is on an upswing.
Two Things We Saw
- A callback to those epic games of 2007-08-09 when the Boston defense would choke the life out of the opposition and make them submit. Boston rotated and closed out on shooters with precision and energy on the way to forcing Orlando into 24.6% shooting and a franchise-low 56 points.
- The first Boston win against a good team all season, which comes despite missing the C’s missing their two most consistent all-stars and three other rotation players.