for this game

Bosh, Ford too much for depleted Celtics

Jan 13, 2007 - 5:17 AM BOSTON (Ticker) -- On paper the matchup against the Boston Celtics looked like a mismatch. Fortunately, Chris Bosh and the Toronto Raptors weren't buying into it.

Bosh scored 27 points and T. J. Ford added 19 and six assists as the Raptors posted a 95-86 victory over the shorthanded Boston Celtics.

Anthony Parker scored 18 points for Toronto, which has won four of its last five games.

Already without All-Star Paul Pierce, guards Delonte West, Wally Szczerbiak and center Theo Ratliff, Boston lost swingman Tony Allen to a season-ending knee injury in Wednesday's 97-84 loss to Indiana. Forward Brian Scalabrine also injured a knee in that game and is out at least two weeks.

"We didn't take them for granted because if we had done that we would have lost," Bosh said. "Teams have done that to us earlier this season and we knew we couldn't afford to do that."

Against a Celtics lineup that often featured three guards, Bosh scored 10 points and Ford added six in the third quarter as the Raptors extended a one-point halftime lead to 66-58.

"We weren't playing the way that we wanted to," Bosh said. "Shots weren't falling for us and in the third we just kind of regrouped. We just looked each other in the eye and and we really needed this game so we just kind of got back together and went back to doing the simple things that got us the lead."

Bosh scored 25 points after the first quarter and finished 7-of-16 from the floor and 13-of-16 from the free-throw line.

Toronto seized control of the contest in the first three minutes of the fourth quarter on 3-pointers by rookie Andres Bargnani and Parker and a pair of free throws by Jose Calderon. Bargnani, who was the first overall pick in the 2006 draft, finished with 10 points and six rebounds.

Led by rookie reserve Rajon Rondo, who scored 13 points in the final stanza, Boston battled back and pulled within 85-80 on a foul-line jumper by Ryan Gomes with 2:10 left. But Calderon answered with a 3-point dagger from the left wing 23 seconds later.

"I thought Jose hit a big shot," Toronto coach Sam Mitchell said. "All the guys that played, they played well. We did what we had to do to win this game. It's a tough lineup when they have three guards on the court."

Calderon finished with 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting and added four assists in 19 minutes.

Rondo finished with a season-high 23 points, five assists and four rebounds. His previous high was 13 points.

"I knew that there was going to be some room in the lane for me to attack the bigs and I wanted to take advantage of that," Rondo said.

Known more for his penetration and defensive skills, Rondo entered shooting just 41 percent but hit 7-of-13 against Toronto. He said he is getting more comfortable with his shot.

"It's all about repetition," he said. "I take probably 100 shots before every game just to get the feel of the ball. Once I get my confidence going I know that I can make them. Confidence is the key to making shots."

Sebastian Telfair added 14 points and Gerald Green added 13 for the Celtics, who lost their third straight and shot just 40 percent (31-of-77).

"I was proud of the effort," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "I thought everyone who came in really helped. They got a couple of three's late that really broke the game open. Overall, I'm really happy with the effort of our guys. Obviously, we've got to get more out of some of our key offensive guys to have any chance."

Toronto also forced 21 turnovers.

"Three little guards on the court and we can force 21 turnovers," Mitchell said. "Our guys did a lot of good things defensively. We just tried to cut the court in half and try to keep them on one side. Give them credit, they hung in there with us."

Trailing, 21-15, after the first period, the Celtics got 11 second-quarter points from rookie Allan Ray and seven more from Telfair to pull within 41-40 at halftime.

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