Sunday, December 16, 2012
Rajon Rondo Is No Tony Parker, Celtics Are No Match For The Spurs
Parker torched Rondo for 22 points, eight rebounds and four steals as San Antonio (19-6, 8-2 home) had no problem with Boston (12-11, 4-7 away) 103-88 at the AT&T Center. Rondo was held to six points, nine assists, five rebounds and seven turnovers. That makes it 14 turnovers in his last two games which is precisely why the Celtics lost on back-to-back nights in Texas (Houston, San Antonio).
Bigger picture, the Spurs are just a better team than the Celtics as they squeeze all the talent possible out of nobodies like Gary Neal (20 points), Tiago Splitter (16 points, 8 rebounds) and Danny Green (12 points). Tim Duncan (5 points, 12 rebounds, 2 blocks) didn't do anything offensively and Manu Ginobili left in the first quarter with a quad injury but San Antonio played like none of that happened.
Paul Pierce (5 rebounds, 3 steals) and Jason Terry led Boston with 18 points, Kevin Garnett had 13 points, six rebounds and two steals, Courtney Lee had 11 points and five rebounds and Jeff Green added 10 off the bench. For the second consecutive game, Brandon Bass had two points so I wouldn't mind seeing Doc Rivers not let him start on Tuesday. Clearly, he is struggling while Green and Jared Sullinger (7 rebounds) look more dependable at the moment.
San Antonio made six more 3-pointers (12-6), nine more free throws (15-6), handed out six more assists (28-22) and had three more steals (9-6). The only thing Boston did better in was fast break points (14-4) but that is of little solace given the final result.
The Spurs led from start to finish as the Celtics looked like an old team (which they are) that was playing its second game in two nights. San Antonio was up 26-21 after one quarter and 52-49 at halftime. The Spurs left no doubt who the tougher team is at this moment with a strong third quarter (25-20) and fourth quarter (26-19).
Boston has one more chance to grab a win on this difficult three-game road trip when they meet Chicago (13-9) on Tuesday (8 p.m., CSN) at the United Center. The Celtics beat the Bulls 101-95 on November 12 at TD Garden and Chicago still doesn't have Rose back in the lineup but they are slowly improving.