On Wednesday night the Celtics returned home to open up their first of five home games. The Phoenix Suns were in town to avoid going 0-11 in their last away games. While the Celtics looked to continue their win streak to four games coming off a huge win against the Knicks. Rajon Rondo is back from his one game suspension and looked to led the team again. In a great team performance the Celtics beat the Suns 87-79.
Just about everyone contributed to this win, in fact everyone who played tonight scored at least 2 points. It also marked the first game the Celtics bench outscored the starters all year. Rondo moved back to point guard and was accompanied by Bradley, Pierce, Bass, and Garnett. The game jumped right out of the gates due to Bradley's high intensity and suffocating defense. He forced two fast breaks early on and got the team off to a great start. The Celtics went into halftime leading by 12 with the score at 53-41.
Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat, right, watches the ball after the tipoff against Boston Celtics power forward Kevin Garnett, left, during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game in Boston, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Of the starters Rondo logged the most most time with 31 minutes but was outdone by Sullinger who had 34 minutes off the bench. Rondo had a sneakily good night with 8 points and 8 rebounds. Pierce struggled shooting just 3-10 on the night, finished with 7 points, and 7 rebounds. Finally KG had a very strong defensive game with 2 blocks and 3 steals to compliment a 10 point, 5 rebound effort. He even ran some point center plays setting up Jeff Green for one of three huge dunks.
The Celtics bench outscored their starters 47-40 led by Jeff Green the team's high scorer with 14 on the night. Jeff was on fire tonight being aggressive and running the floor. He had three big dunks that really swung the momentum for the Celtics two of which came back to back. The biggest performance came from Jared Sullinger who continues to get better every game. Sully had a career night scoring 12 points and grabbing a career high 16 rebounds. It was just a great game for the rookie who showed off his rebounding instincts and great basketball I.Q.
Boston Celtics shooting guard Courtney Lee (11) drives to the hoop against Phoenix Suns guard Jared Dudley (3) during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game in Boston, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
The team played great defensively again, holding the Suns to 39.3% shooting percentage. The Suns bench did the exact opposite of the Celtics, contributing just 16 points collectively all game. Their starters scored 63 points in large minutes and were led by Luis Scola who scored a game high 16 points. Marcin Gortat played a solid defensive game against Garnett finishing with 5 blocks and 2 steals. The Suns made a large push in the third quarter opening it up with a 12-0 run. They even won the quarter 23-14 but couldn't get over the hump losing the fourth quarter by 5.
The Celtics will play their second home game on Friday as Kevin McHale and the Houston Rockets visit the Garden. The Rockets have been hot as of late led by their dynamic back court of Jeremy Lin and James Harden. Tune in at 7:30pm as the Celtics look to win their second of five at home and increase their win streak to 5 fives.