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Last night was an important win for the Celtics for many reasons. First off, the Celtics finally clamped down and finished off a team in the 4th quarter. That has been their biggest problem in the last month. They were finally able to hit clutch free throws and make key stops down the stretch to win. Secondly, Tony Allen came up big again. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I don't want Tony to leave. He has played out of his mind the last week and been pretty good all year. His steal against Wade was the play of the game and sealed the victory. Thirdly, the improvement of KG. Look, obviously he isn't the shot blocking threat or rebounder he once was, but he's looking much better than even three games ago. He had a huge turn around jumper in the closing minutes and we should be going down to him on the block every time in crunch time.

Rondo had another incredible game and was the best player on the court again. I feel like I say this every game now, but it is really true. Besides his free throw shooting, the guy can do no wrong. I really do hope he starts having more confidence with his free throws though. You could tell, especially on those last two in the final minute, how nervous he was at the line. The weirdest stat in basketball has to be Rondo's league leading field goal percentage and his league low free throw shooting for guards.  Has that ever been done before?

The Celtics got a lot of calls their way last night. Everyone loves to say how the Celtics are the victims of bad calls a lot, and there is some truth to that. However, they get a lot of calls their way too. When they didn't call Rondo on that push off and Miami got two technicals it reminded me a lot of the Hawks-Celtics game where Boston got screwed. Also, not a lot of people have talked about this, but one of the major reasons the Celtics should keep Ray Allen is for his free throw shooting. Is there anyone in the league you'd rather have taking crunch time free throws than Allen? It is definitely a huge factor, especially with the way the Celtics find themselves in so many close games.

Lastly, shout out to Eddie House. He came up huge tonight with his shooting. Though he drives me nuts with his habit of taking foot on the line three pointers, the guy is one of the rare utility players in this league that can win you a game. I'd say Eddie House single handedly swings 3-4 games a year with his shooting.

Overall it was a solid victory for the Celtics. Boston did a pretty good job with Dwayne Wade and despite some suspect interior defense played solid on both ends of the court. With a game against the New Jersey Junior High Nets coming up they have a great chance to put together a nice little 3 game winning streak before another showdown with the Magic. We should be feeling better right now as Celtics fans.

Karl Dillinger 2/04/2010 08:33:00 AM Edit
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