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Brandon Bass rattled off eight straight points early in the second half to help the Celtics erase a five point halftime deficit and defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves, 104-94, Wednesday night.
Bass finished with 12 points, 8 rebounds, 3 blocked shots and 2 steals, while Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett both added double-doubles. Rondo finished with 17 points and 11 assists, and Garnett scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.
All five Celtics’ starters scored in double figure with Paul Pierce pouring in 18, and Jason Terry adding 17 while shooting 70 percent from the field.
The Timberwolves were led by 19 points and 13 rebounds from Kevin Love, but the star forward managed to connect on just 6 of his 12 free throw attempts. Nikola Pekovic added 14 points and 11 rebounds while aggressively going at the offensive glass.
While their numbers weren’t gaudy, a lot of credit has to be given to Celtics bench in this one. Jeff Green was looking for his shot early and aggressively racked up 8 points in the first half to help the Celtics keep pace. Courtney Lee played some good defense on a feisty J.J. Barea that Rondo was having trouble keeping track of. Jared Sullinger made his presence felt with some key offensive rebounds in the second half and recorded 7 points and 7 rebounds.
The Celtics deserve a pat on the back for actually trying to rebound in this game. The Timberwolves are one of the NBA’s best rebounding teams with Love and Pekovic manning the middle, but the Celtics managed to out-rebound them 45-41.
Wreckless Rondo showed up in the first half and was a main reason the Celtics went into the half with a deficit and 10 turnovers already in the stat sheet. Rondo and the Celtics took better care of the ball in the second half, turning it over just six more times.
The Celtics have now gone 10-0 since acquiring Garnett from the Timberwolves back in 2007.
The Celtics face a rare back-to-back-home-and-home series with the 76ers on Friday and Saturday.