With ten minutes left in the game on Saturday night, the Celtics we’re clinging to a 3 point lead. Ray Allen was dribbling the ball in the corner, directly in front of my seats in Section 8. At that moment Boston had yet to make a single three pointer, they were 0-14 as a team, and Ray himself was 0-5. There were rumblings from the Garden crowd as to whether or not he should even be in the game. But as I watched him handle the ball, he had a look on his face of complete confidence. It was the look of the greatest shooter in the history of the league, not a guy with a bad ankle who hadn’t been able to throw the ball in the ocean all night. He dribbled towards the top of the key and I nudged my buddy and said “Ray’s gonna make this one,” just as he pulled up and buried the C’s first three of the night.
Later with four and a half minutes to go and Boston still leading by just 3, Paul Pierce was whistled for his 6th foul on a questionable charging call, and a sense of panic took over the building. The game appeared to be slipping away, and now the C’s crunch time go to guy was done for the evening. But then Rajon Rondo raised his hand and said “Don’t worry guys, I got this.” For the next two and a half minutes Rondo did literally everything for Boston, and with just 1:45 remaining the lead was up to ten, and the game was safely in hand.
Rondo finished by making his final seven shots: 3-3 FG, 4-4 FT, and 1-1 3PT (but oh so close to 2-2), while also becoming just the 2nd Celtics player ever to post a triple double in a Game 7. Which gives me the opportunity to post yet another espn graphic of his triple double antics:
It’s also Rondo’s 3rd out of 4 total triple doubles in the NBA this post season, the Lakers Andrew Bynum had the other. Rondo and KG are tied for the playoff lead in double doubles as well, with 9 a piece.
I know it’s an obvious thing to say about a team still alive in the playoffs, but the Celtics keep winning every time they need to. Since the Game 2 victory in Atlanta they haven’t trailed in either series, and they have yet to lose two games in a row. I don’t think they have much of a chance against Miami, but who knows. They play to the level of their opponent, and often only as well as they have to. But their toughness is unquestionable.
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