No Rajon Rondo, no problem for our Boston Celtics. With Courtney Lee coming off the bench to start alongside Jason Terry, both players had arguably their best all-around performances of the season in helping the C’s throttle the Portland Trail Blazers, 96-78. Lee produced 10 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals over 37 minutes of court time. Defensively, Lee alternated between guarding impressive rookie point guard Damian Lillard and harassing Portland’s shooters on the wing. Terry was 6-8 from the floor at one point, finishing 7-11 with 17 points and zero turnovers while playing solid D on the perimeter.
Clearly, both players were in sync – a welcome sign after a mostly disjointed guard effort through the first 15 games of the 2012-13 NBA regular season.
The question now is one of consistency. Can the Celtics’ guards put together two impressive complete games in a row, or will they revert to playing tentative and a step slow?
I would like to think of this game as a turning point, so I’m going to look at the glass half full. One thing is for sure – we won’t have to wait long to find out. Our C’s travel to Milwaukee for a road game against the Bucks tonight. If Terry and Lee can take care of their business on the perimeter the way they did against the Blazers, then we very well may escape the Rondo suspension with a 2-0 record. If they come out flat, then that will put additional pressure on the old legs of Kevin Garnett on the defensive end of the court. Not something we want to consider, especially if we’re trying to win games.