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Celtics Push Win Streak to 17

After escaping a hostile situation at Atlanta with an 88-85 win, the Celtics seemed poised for a misstep at home against the mediocre Bulls. The Celtics held a two-point lead at halftime and were in line for a tough second half as well. Then…the Celtics outscored the Bulls 41-27 in the third quarter to push ahead to a 126-108 win.

It takes a lot to win 17 straight games, with different players contributing huge each night. Against the Bulls Friday night, Kendrick Perkins poured in a career-high 25 points on 12-15 shooting with eight rebounds and one awesome block an a Ben Gordon dunk attempt.

Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo continued their push for all-star nods as well. Allen scored a game-high 27 points with five assists. Rondo added four points and four steals with a game-high 15 assists. The Celts were pass-happy all game, as they dished out 40 assists in all.

Brian Scalabrine even got in on the action with the rest of the bench players in the fourth quarter. He had two threes (I LOVE A SCALABRINE 3-POINTER) and an amazing hook shoot with the shot clock ready to run out.

Loul Deng had a nice shooting night (8-15 from the field) and led the Bulls with 19 points to go with seven rebounds and two assists. Andres Nocioni contributed 16 points off the bench, and the always-ridiculous-looking Joakim Noah added 10.

The Celtics go for their 18th straight victory against the Knicks on Sunday.

Game Notes

  • Olympic Gold Medalist Usain Bolt helped Lucky do his goofy dunking in between quarters.
  • The 40 assists were a season-high for the team.
  • The longest winning streak for the Celts last season was 10 games.

About KC Downey - @kc_downey

KC is the "head coach" of the Sports of Boston, LLC blog network. Follow him on Twitter: @kc_downey

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Discussion

3 comments for “Celtics Push Win Streak to 17”

  1. These guys are insane right now. Keep up the good work boys!

    Posted by Boston Knucklehead | December 20, 2008, 2:54 pm
  2. Seems to me that the winning streak – and the whole season so far – is the result of 3 major changes this year. First, the amazing Ray Allen performance. He’s returned to his pre-Celtic form (with the addition of some fine defensive efforts), and operates like a well oiled machine. I was more than ready to trade him after his dismal performance in the second part of last year. Boy am I glad no one listened to me!

    Second, is the stunning improvement in Kendrick Perkins. Suddenly, he’s not fouling out. Suddenly, he’s learned to go right up with the basketball to score. And his defensive presence cannot be denied. A remarkable turnaround.

    Third, Rajon Rondo’s continued development. He’s not the best point guard in the NBA, but he’s certainly capable of terrific games, and his floor generalship is in the top echelon. If he can ever give us 15 points a game in addition to his fantastic passing, the sky is his limit.

    So, the above combined with the balanced attack of Pierce and Garnett has made for one hell of a season. The big question mark is the bench, which can’t seem to be consistent. If Rivers ever gets that straightened out, nobody’s going to beat this team.

    Posted by Ken | December 21, 2008, 8:18 am
  3. BKH – This is fun isn’t it? haha

    Ken, these are all valid points.

    Ray Allen has seriously elevated his game. I think a lot of it is the rest of the team finding the right shots for Ray. He seems to be more comfortable with the offense and it’s made the team that much better.

    Kevin Garnett has had a lot to do with Perk’s improved play. He’s always played hard and tough, but he’s never seemed to play this smart. Perk is choosing the right times to be aggressive, and it’s really paid off for him.

    And Rajon Rondo…he just gets better and better. He now is playing to his strengths (his speed and ball handling) and is blowing away some older and slower point guards. Chris Paul may be the best point guard in the NBA, but Rondo is probably one of the best in the Eastern Conference.

    I could argue that the Celtics should have four players in the All-Star Game (KG, Pierce, Ray Allen, Rondo) much like the Pistons did a few years ago.

    An improved bench will make this team nearly unbeatable (even more so than they already are).

    Posted by KC | December 21, 2008, 1:54 pm

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