I really, really, really hate losing to the Lakers. No matter what the stakes. So this one hurts. It also spoils Rajon's return. It also spoils the fact that several players played really well tonight (at least on offense). But the defense couldn't stop the Lakers and their cast of misfit toys, so the Celtics deserved the loss tonight.
Things started out rough for Rajon as he missed (badly) on his first few shots and got blocked on one drive. The second quarter was another story as he found ways to score (with some familiar Rondo pizzazz). He scored all his 8 points in that quarter because in the 3rd quarter he decided to be the playmaker Rondo. He dished out 4 assists after halftime, some in spectacular form.
Unfortunately when he returned in the last 5 minutes of the game he couldn't find that magic and the rest of the team couldn't close the deal as they watched the Lakers run up 10 unanswered points to steal the win.
In addition to Rondo, there were other positives that should not be ignored from this game. Including:
- Gerald Wallace got his 2nd highest point total of the year and added 5 assists, 4 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2 blocks in an all around good game for him.
- Kelly Olynyk scored a career high 25 points and added 7 nifty assists and 5 boards. Great game by the kid.
- Phil Pressey did his best Rajon Rondo impersonation with 9 assists (coming off 10 against Toronto). He even hit 2 three pointers in the game!
- Assists are back! The Celtics picked up 34 assists to just 7 turnovers. Everyone was playing the Rondo way in his honor.
Unfortunately the Lakers were allowed to shoot 50% from the field and 60% (!) from 3 point land. That's the difference folks. How we let Ryan Kelly and Kendal Marshall beat us is beyond me, but that's the way the ball bounces sometimes.