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Sam Cassell was supposed to use this game as an audition. Instead, he was thouroughly embarassed by Rajon Rondo for much of his time in there. Rondo grabbed a couple steals from Cassell early in the first half, adding to Cassell’s frustration. Cassell wasn’t having it after another Rondo steal, dishing out a flagrant foul in the form of a punch/slap to Rondo’s face, sending him crashing to the floor. Cassell was instantly ejected and the Clippers lost 111-100.
I have a strange feeling that Danny Ainge may not be bringing Cassell in afterall. He has said time and time again that he’ll do whatever it takes to get his buyout from the Clippers. All he wants to do is win, or so he says. If anything, he drove his price further down. His buyout should come sooner, but will he be joining the Celtics? We know one thing: if he does, he’s definitely backing up Rajon Rondo.
Rondo schooled whoever came in the game to defend him, scoring a team-high 24 points, to go with 5 rebounds, 8 assists, and 4 steals. He has really matured in the last couple months, especially since KG went down.
As far as the Cassell situation, it definitely bears watching. I mean he shouldn’t have lost his cool, that shows low class and will not help you win over potential new fans. How will Cassell and Rondo act toward each other in the locker room? Maybe there’s no hard feelings, but I don’t see how. Rondo actually is probably in pain (literal hard feelings) when he wakes up this morning to find his nose still hurts.
OK so Cassell leaves the game. Clips are done, right? Well, I thought that Chris Kaman wouldn’t be available and the Celtics would win in a laugher. Now without Cassell, it would be even easier. Well, Kaman did play, and poured in 34 minutes. Despite battling the flu, he had 12 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 blocked shots, but still couldn’t be a difference-maker. I’m sure if Kevin Garnett was in there, he wouldn’t post those numbers at all.
Kaman or not, Cassell or not. No matter. Celtics took this game easily by 11, pulling away in the fourth quarter. Rondo led the team, and Ray Allen chipped in 19 points in the win. The Celtics are now 3-2 without Kevin Garnett. He’s expected to miss Friday’s game against the T-Wolves. We will see if he’s there, or Cassell ends up here!