Found February 03, 2013 on The Nosebleeds:
Celtics 106, Clippers 104 At one point during the Celtics magnificent performance against the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday Afternoon, Tommy Heinsohn could not contain himself and exclaimed, “I’ve been waiting for this type of basketball for years! It’s so easy to win when you play this way!” He was referring to a quick outlet pass off a steal that led to an easy layup for Courtney Lee. The C’s forced 18 turnovers and got out on the break for 13 fast break points on their way to a comfortable (92-77) lead after three quarters, but in the final frame some of their flaws began to resurface. Boston set season-highs in first quarter points, with 33, and held the Clippers (34-15) to only 10 points in the second quarter, yet when the intensity increased on both sides of the ball in the fourth quarter they were unable to score. The Celtics (24-23) had a total of nine points in nearly eleven minutes of game time before Jason Terry hit a difficult step-back jumper to put his team up 103-98. Without Rajon Rondo on the floor, this team was able to play inspired team basketball for three quarters, yet they still floundered down the stretch. However, due to a heroic defensive effort from the entire team and a couple of clutch shots from a no-longer-slumping Paul Pierce, the C’s managed to hang on to win their fourth consecutive game. They’re getting back to playing “Celtic Basketball,” to grinding out wins through late-game defense, ferocious determination, and an ability to hit big shots at the most important times. This team is not feeling sorry for itself in the wake of injuries to Rondo and Jared Sullinger, instead every player has stepped up their production in an effort to keep this team afloat. For the third consecutive game the C’s bench scored over 40 points, and outscored the vaunted Clippers bench 52-29. Kevin Garnett, always the physical and spiritual leader of this team, spoke about the all-around play that has characterized the Celtics during their current win streak in a post-game interview: If they can continue to employ such a balanced, hard-nosed attack, there is no doubt that Boston is still a legitimate contender in a weak Eastern Conference. Once they shore up the offense so that it runs smoothly in critical late-game situations, then they will truly scare the rest of the teams in that conference. Like Tommy said, it’s easy to win when you play this way.
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