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Celtics and Blazers Square Off at The Rose Garden

Boston Celtics (34-18) at Portland Trailblazers (32-24)
Friday, February 19, 2010
TV: Comcast SportsNet/ESPN; Radio: WEEI
Venue: The Rose Garden
The Boston Celtics will aim for their third consecutive win tonight when they battle the Portland Trailblazers at 10:30pm.
If any team can understand the Celtics' injury woes this season, it's certainly the Blazers, who have seen All-Star guard Brandon Roy, along with their top two centers, Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla, all miss time this season. Partly due to their lack of an interior presence, on Tuesday, the Blazers traded Steve Blake, Travis Outlaw and cash to the Los Angeles Clippers for veteran center Marcus Camby. Camby will help further bolster the Blazers' defense, which is currently allowing just 95.14 points per game. Camby will make his Blazers debut tonight.
Portland's injuries have resulted in some inconsistencies of late, as the Blazers are 4-3 so far in the month of February and 5-5 in their last 10 games. Despite the injuries, though, the Blazers are still managing to score the basketball, averaging a shade over 96 points per game over their most recent seven-game stretch. They've also topped 100 points in their last two contests. A large portion of that production has come from forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who's averaged 21 points per game in February. And after a 52-point performance back on January 30, Andre Miller has to be paid attention to as well.
While Camby is set to make his debut tonight, the same cannot be said for Nate Robinson, who the Celtics acquired yesterday via trade. Robinson is not expected to suit up for the C's until Sunday when Boston visits Denver at 3:30pm. As a result, Boston's bench will be somewhat shorthanded once again, and guys like Marquis Daniels, who was held scoreless last night against the Lakers, will have to produce more tonight.

Projected Starters:

Celtics: Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Kendrick Perkins

Blazers: Andre Miller, Brandon Roy, Martell Webster, LaMarcus Aldridge, Marcus Camby

Health Check: For the Celtics, guard Tony Allen (ankle) is listed as questionable.

For the Blazers, centers Greg Oden (knee) and Joel Przybilla (knee) are out, while forward Nicolas Batum (illness) is listed as probable, and guard Brandon Roy (hamstring) is listed as questionable.

Keep It In Mind: The Celtics defeated the Blazers in Boston back on Friday, January 22.

Who's Hot: For the Celtics, Ray Allen shot 10-15 en route to 24 points against the Lakers last night.

For the Blazers, Martell Webster scored 28 points on 9-13 shooting against the Clippers on Tuesday.

Who's Not: For the Celtics, Rasheed Wallace hit just two of 11 shots against the Lakers last night, finishing with four points.

For the Blazers, in his return from injury, Brandon Roy scored just four points on 2-7 shooting against the Clippers.

Key Matchup: Rajon Rondo vs. Andre Miller

Honorable Mention: Kevin Garnett vs. LaMarcus Aldridge

Skinny: Marcus Camby has always been a force on the boards, and that shouldn't be any different in his new uniform. If the C's can hold guys like Camby and Aldridge off the glass, while containing Roy and slowing Miller, they should be able to notch their third straight win heading into Denver on Sunday.

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