Celtics 114, Raptors 107
Boston may have led the entire game, but this win wasn't a sure thing by any means. Chris Bosh hit a 17-foot jumper with 1:46 remaining to cut what was once a 15-point second-half lead down to four. It looked like the Raptors were going to make this one come down to the final seconds, but that was before Kendrick Perkins decided to make his biggest play of the game.
When Rasheed Wallace, who led the team with 29 points, fired up a 3-pointer that could have advanced Boston's lead to seven on the next Celtics possession, most of the building probably thought it was falling. After all, he was 5-of-6 from downtown prior to that attempt. But Perkins was planning for the miss and did the dirty work he's known all too well for.
Perkins camped out under the basket and beat numerous Raptors for an offensive rebound off of Sheed's miss. He went up for the putback and drew a foul, eventually making both free throws and extending the lead to six with 1:28 remaining. When Paul Pierce chipped in a classic, one-on-one jumper on the next Celtics possession that upped that lead to eight, it was all she wrote for the Raptors' attempt to end their losing ways against the Celts.
Key Box Score Line
There are really two players who could be slotted in here. Rasheed Wallace had his best game as a Celtic by leading the team with 29 points on 9-of-12 shooting, but this game was all about Rajon Rondo. He dominated the game at both ends of the court, ran the Celtics' offense like a well-oiled machine and got nearly anything he wanted whenever he wanted, be it an assist or an easy basket in the lane. He finished with a triple-double in points, rebounds and assists and also grabbed four steals. He was literally unstoppable, and that's why he's getting the nod here over Sheed's great performance.
Box Score Nuggets
- Chris Bosh led the Raptors with 31 points and Rasheed Wallace led the Celtics with 29.
- Boston committed only 12 turnovers, compared to 26 assists.
- The Celtics scored the first 10 points of the game.
- Once again, offense ruled in this matchup, as Boston shot 50.6 percent and Toronto shot 48.1 percent.
- Eddie House scored 11 points off the bench for Boston, but no other reserve scored more than two.
- Toronto had two bench players, Jose Calderon (11 points) and Marco Belinelli (14 points) put in solid performances.
- The Celtics grabbed 14 offensive rebounds.
- Kendrick Perkins finished with six boards, five of which came at the offensive end of the floor.
- Boston led the game from start to finish.
- Rajon Rondo led the C's with 10 rebounds.
- Paul Pierce had only one turnover after committing a total of nine in his previous two games.
- All five Celtics starters finished with at least 16 points.
Quote of the Night
Ray Allen on how helpful it is when Rasheed Wallace is hitting shots: "Big time, because my guy has to decide whether or not to help. It is a full rotation when you have me and [Rasheed Wallace] out there and Eddie (House), you can't just say that I am not going to leave him because he shoots just as well. It makes teams have to make a decision."