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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Celtics Exact Some Revenge On The Bucks, Left Over From Last Week

Do the Celtics play any teams from the Western Conference this season? They do? Just wondering because after six games (all against mostly average Eastern Conference teams) including two apiece against the Wizards and Bucks, I'm ready to see something new.

Tonight, Boston (3-3, 2-1 away) won 96-92 over Milwaukee (3-2, 1-2 home) at BMO Harris Bradley Center in the second night of a back-to-back (after losing at home to Philadelphia on Friday). The Bucks had ruined the Celtics' home opener with a 99-88 win on November 2 so tonight was a fitting way to pay them back for being so inconsiderate.

Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 25 points and nine rebounds, Kevin Garnett had 18 points and six rebounds, Jason Terry scored 15 in a rare start and Rajon Rondo kept his double-digit assist streak going (at 30 games) with 10 points and 10 assists. The most valuable part of the win for me was Jeff Green's 12 points off the bench. For once, he was aggressive and went to the basket (6 of 8 on free throws).

Monta Ellis was unstoppable, he led Milwaukee with a game-high 32 points and eight assists. Samuel Dalembert had 14 points and eight rebounds and Ersan Ilyasova added 10 points and six rebounds. The Bucks probably lost since their best player-Brandon Jennings-was held to four points on 1 of 11 shooting. Former Celtics great Marquis Daniels had 12 points off the bench and Larry Sanders added 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Milwaukee outscored Boston in the first three quarters: 22-20 after one, 42-39 at halftime and 68-64 after three. It's not like it was a big deficit but it was nice to see the C's rally with a superb fourth: 32-24.

Shooting better (44.4%-39.8%) from the field, on 3-pointers (5-3) and from the foul line (27-19) allowed the Celtics to overcome another awful performance in the paint: they were outscored 48-32 by the Bucks, who also had four more rebounds (44-40) and three more steals (7-4).

Boston receives a day off tomorrow but they conclude this busy stretch with a game in Chicago (8 p.m., CSN) against the Bulls (4-2), their third game in four days. They are not the same without Derrick Rose-duh!-but former Celts assistant Tom Thibodeau's teams are always tough and play great defense. That's why these games are usually close and similar to playoff contests.

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