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Celtics Take Down Heat

Well, the final minute wasn't pretty for the Celtics, as the Heat cut a 20-point deficit all the way down to three, but they hung on for a 112-107 victory and move to 7-2 on the season.

  • Overall, the Celtics' fourth quarter execution was much better tonight compared to what we saw in Dallas on Monday, except in the final minute, when the C's made some poor decisions (on fast breaks, especially) that allowed Miami to get too close for comfort.
  • The Celtics came out firing, scoring 27 first quarter points on 11-19 shooting. They added 34 second quarter points, totaling a season-high 61 first half points.
  • Miami was bound to make a run, even after the Celtics opened up a 20-point lead, and maybe the lead shouldn't have shrunk to three, but the C's did do a credible job of answering the Heat's baskets early and midway through the fourth quarter.
  • We can file this under the "Team Win" category. The ball movement was excellent (24 assists), and Ray Allen was a one-man wrecking crew, scoring 35 points on 13-23 shooting. He made his first seven three-point field goals, and finished 7-9 overall from three-point nation.
  • 16 more assists for Rajon Rondo tonight, against just three turnovers. Did we all see that first quarter dunk (scroll down if you didn't)? Oh, my.
  • Another huge double-double for Kevin Garnett: 16 points (6-8 from the field) to go along with 13 rebounds.
  • Paul Pierce was huge as well, with 25 points on 10-16 shooting.
  • Was this Nate Robinson's best game of the season? Quite possibly. He actually was in control of the second unit tonight as the backup point guard. He attacked the rim, looked for his shot, and got others involved. The patience and poise were both there. It couldn't have come at a better time.
  • Shaq posted five points and seven rebounds in his return. Not bad. We'll take it. He seems to be posting up too far from the hoop, though. On at least three occasions tonight when he received the entry pass, he was forced to spin into the lane and fade away from the hoop, forcing up awkward hook shot and fading floaters that didn't drop.
  • Can we talk about hustle plays? How about Glen Davis chasing down his own miss midway through the second quarter and feeding Pierce for a step-back three-pointer? Or Rondo crashing the glass on a Garnett missed free throw in the third quarter, snaring it away from Haslem in mid-air and throwing it off of him out of bounds, thus creating another possession for Boston?

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