Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/23/12
By Mike ShalinThe Sports Xchange BOSTON -- In most situations, Oklahoma City coach Scott Brooks would be thrilled to see Jeff Green have the kind of game he had Friday night. But Friday night, Green, who now plays for the Celtics, had a big game against the Thunder, his old team. "I love him. It was good to see. I was hoping he'd have it against Orlando Sunday and not tonight," Brooks said after Green came off the bench to score 17 points, including seven straight in a critical 11-0 run late in the third quarter, to help Boston end a two-game losing streak with a 108-100 win over the Thunder. Green, who was traded from Oklahoma City to Boston late in the 2010-11 season before missing all of last season with a heart problem that required surgery, logged 24:36 Friday night. He went 6-for-11 from the floor, 5-for-5 from the foul line and helped Paul Pierce with the task of playing OKC star Kevin Durant. "Jeff is a really good player," said Durant, who went 9-for-20 from the floor and scored 29 points, despite three first-half fouls. "His role is a little bit different there than it was with us, (but) he's coming off the bench and giving them a good punch." Brooks said: "Jeff Green came in and had an immediate impact in the first half and he came back in the second half and matched that. Their bench did a good job." With Green playing the aggressive style the Celtics (and Green) want him to play, and leading the way with his season high, the Boston bench outscored its counterpart, 35-13. It helped the Celtics play their best game of the young season, allowing them to rebound from Wednesday night's no-defense loss to San Antonio and move to 7-6. Boston's victory also ended the Thunder's three-game winning streak. "I thought Jeff Green was spectacular," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "It's funny, I think the two plays I called for him he didn't score. He scored on all the plays that weren't his and that's what we kept telling him he has to do. Stop waiting for us to call it, and I thought he did that tonight." Before the game, Green said he looked at his first game against his old team as just another game, one of 82 during a long regular season schedule. After the game, he said, "Still is. Ain't nothing changed. We won. That's all I wanted to do." Asked again about this game being different, he said, "You still gotta be competitive; still gotta do what you gotta do and do whatever it takes for your team to win and that's what I did." Pierce scored 27 points, Kevin Garnett had 18 points, nine rebounds and four assists, Jason Terry also scored 16 and Rajon Rondo six points, 16 assists and seven rebounds -- his 36th straight double-digit assist game. Russell Westbrook had 26 points, eight assists and seven rebounds and Serge Ibaka 17 points and 13 boards for the 9-4 Thunder. The Thunder trailed by 14 with 9:55 left and by 12 with 3:30 remaining before making a 9-0 run. After a Boston turnover, and down by three, the Thunder had a chance to tie the game but Durant missed a 3-pointer with 1:15 left. Four free throws by Garnett and a 3-pointer by Terry iced the game. "I know our guys. They're gonna keep fighting. They're not gonna ever give up," Brooks said. "It's not gonna be pretty all the time but we're gonna play with great effort and they don't have quit in them. We came within one possession, KD's 3. I thought that was good. Then we had a couple of bad possessions defensively, but we got beat by a very good team." NOTES: Pierce was 7-for-7 from the foul line and has made 21 straight free throws over the last four games. ... Rondo has 61 assists and 17 turnovers during those same four games. ... Friday night marked another return to Boston for ex-Celtic Kendrick Perkins, who had five points and nine rebounds in almost 30 minutes. "Going against guys that you played with for a long time, won rings, went through wars with, still brothers over there," he said earlier in the day. "But at the end of the day, we're still trying to win games." ... The Thunder visit Philadelphia to close a two-game trip Saturday, while Boston is at Orlando on Sunday. ... Rivers flew home to Orlando for Thanksgiving and now heads right back there for Sunday's game. ... Celtics guard Avery Bradley, expected to be out a while longer after offseason shoulder surgery, dressed and sat on the bench as the 12th man. There was no chance of him playing.
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