Perk finished the night with 8 points, 13 rebounds, 1 steal, 1 block, and his 9th technical of the season. But Perk's biggest contribution doesn't show up in his stats. His biggest contribution was his defense on Dwight Howard who was held to just 14 points which is well under his average.
One thing the should give Celtics' opponents pause for thought is the fact that the Celtics are 17 and 2 and have won 9 games in a row and KG has yet to have a huge game. Last night he finished with 15 points, 9 rebounds, and 1 assist. Maybe he is waiting to unwrap his big game on Christmas day.
Rondo continues to make his case for making the All Star team with 16 points, 4 rebounds, 12 assists, and 1 steal. He is so much fun to watch.
Ray Allen continues to scorch the nets with 21 points on 8 of 13 shooting to go with 1 rebound, 2 assists and 1 steal. He played 40 minutes, which was the most of any Celtic.
Paul Pierce again led the team with 24 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal. What makes this team so tough is that they can win in so many ways. They can win with all 3 stars struggling. But in every game, someone steps up. It may be a starter or it may be the bench or it may just be a balanced attack with no one standing out. It makes it hard to double anyone because so many others can hurt you.
Tony had a solid contribution of 6 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists, and 1 steal. He gave us a scare as he limped off the court with an ankle injury but he later returned to play well and didn't show any sign of a limp.
Big Baby is emerging as a very good defender and did a good job on Howard when he filled in for Perk. He finished with 4 points, 4 rebounds, and 1 assists. Eddie House continued his hot shooting off the bench with 11 points, 3 rebounds and 1 steal.
The refs were tech happy last night as 8 technical fouls were called: 5 on the Celtics and 3 on the Magic. Sam Cassell was tossed after picking up 2 technicals on the bench. Even Rondo picked up a technical. It seems as though the refs are listening to the complaints of the other teams who say that the Celtics are too physical and do too much taunting. They are very quick to blow their whistles. I worry that Perk having so many technicals this early is going to come back to haunt the team in the playoffs.
The Celtics weren't the only team playing physical ball. The Magic gave as much as they got.