Rondo's triple-double helps Celts edge SpursJan 6, 2011 - 4:36 AM Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Rajon Rondo looked fully healthy in posting a robust line of 12 points, 22 assists, 10 rebounds and six steals, and the Boston Celtics survived a late Spurs comeback to hand San Antonio a second straight defeat, 105-103, at TD Garden.
Ray Allen was an efficient 13-of-16 shooting for 31 points, but his two missed foul shots with 8.1 seconds remaining gave the Spurs an unlikely chance at the win after they trailed by nine with less than a minute to play.
On the game's final possession, Manu Ginobili controlled the ball at the top of the key and was promptly double-teamed. Marquis Daniels bit on Ginobili's first pump fake, but Paul Pierce was there to block his deep two-point try to seal the win, Boston's third straight.
"We didn't want to give up a three, that was the only thing that could beat us, [so] we sort of overplayed on the three-point line," Pierce recalled. "You got two heavyweights battling and it was fun for me to be part of. I'm just glad that we won."
Ginobili ended with 24 points and eight rebounds, while Tim Duncan and Tony Parker each netted 18 points for the Spurs, who lost a 13-point decision at New York on Tuesday and have fallen in consecutive games for the first time all season.
"It's just a tough back-to-back, obviously against a very good team. Boston is a tough one and they played great," Parker said. "We got our chance down the stretch...we had a chance to win the game and it didn't happen."
Despite the absence of the injured Kevin Garnett, the matchup between the best records in the Eastern and Western Conference lived up to its billing.
It was tied, 96-all, coming down the stretch before a Daniels bucket started a 9-0 Celtics run. Allen hit a three-pointer during the spurt and ended it with a driving layup for a 105-96 advantage with 56.8 seconds on the clock.
Ginobili made one from behind the arc, and two quick Celtics turnovers led to four San Antonio points for a 105-103 game with 33 seconds left.
Pierce, who logged 18 points, was off the mark on a mid-range jumper, but a long rebound bounced to Nate Robinson near the foul line. Robinson dished outside to Allen with time winding down, and his two subsequent misses resulted in several tense seconds for the home crowd.
The evenly-matched contest was tight throughout. Boston held a slim, 27-25 lead after the first quarter, and the Spurs used 12 second-quarter points from Parker to take a 51-49 edge into the break.
San Antonio was on top, 70-67, late in the third prior to the Celtics scoring 10 straight points. A George Hill jumper just before the buzzer brought San Antonio within 77-72 with 12 minutes to play.
The Celtics have won all three games since Rondo returned from a left hamstring injury and plantar fasciitis. This was Rondo's second triple-double of the season...The Spurs had won two straight and 14 of 16 contests in Boston before Wednesday...Glen Davis chipped in 23 points for Boston, which shot 61.3 percent from the field...Richard Jefferson tallied 14 points for the Spurs, who got 10 points apiece from Gary Neal and Matt Bonner.
- SAN ANTONIO: 103
Jan 5 9:59 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 72
End of 3rd
Jan 5 9:14 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 51
Jan 5 8:36 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 25
End of 1st
Jan 5 8:04 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 0
1st Quarter - 15:00
Jan 5 7:42 PM
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