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News » C's act like big Bullies

C's act like big Bullies

C's act like big BulliesCeltics 118, Bulls 90

They're loaded, Vinny Del Negro said.

They're not the same team that huffed through seven overtime periods during the playoffs against the Bulls last April.

But even the Chicago coach probably had no idea of the degree to which general manager Danny Ainge loaded the Celtics' pantry in the offseason.

They're not so much loaded as overstuffed, if the Celtics' 118-90 win against the Bulls last night at the Garden is any indication.

The Big Three sat out the fourth quarter but still managed to score huge amounts in short but potent stretches.

Paul Pierce scored 20 of his 22 points in a third-quarter stretch that sent Chicago down for good.

Ray Allen poured in 18 of his 20 in the second and third quarters and moved past John Stockton and into 33rd place on the all-time NBA scoring list with 19,712 points.

Kevin Garnett, the third option in this crew, scored 16 points in 25 minutes. Rajon Rondo finished one assist shy of his career high with 16. Eddie House tied Pierce with a game-high 22 points off the bench. And the Celtics shot 50 percent (12-for-24) from downtown.

But there also was room for the other end of the floor to demand equal time.

The Celtics now have gone three games without allowing an opponent to shoot 42 percent from the field (the Bulls hit 41.5 percent).

For the second straight game, the opponent didn't make it out of the third quarter.

Allen followed up a 10-point second period with an eight-point third, including back-to-back 3-pointers.

But the Bulls were getting hit from several angles.

Pierce, who opened the third with a 3-pointer and came back with a three-point play on the next possession, hit his second and third treys of the period in succession. Those were followed by a Garnett 20-footer that gave the C's a 74-45 lead.

The Bulls were mining the same low-scoring ground as the Bobcats did at the Garden on Wednesday, when Pierce tapped them on the shoulder with his fourth trey of the quarter to push the advantage to 79-51.

Trey No. 5 dropped with 26 seconds left and the Celtics , finally tested by a late-quarter Bulls flurry, closed out the quarter with an 88-61 lead.

Pierce didn't miss in the third, shooting 7-of-7 from the floor, including 5-of-5 from downtown. Overall, the Celtics shot 75 percent in the period.

The pace was so pure that the 26 points scored by the Bulls marked the first time since the fourth quarter of the season opener in Cleveland that an opponent broke 20 points in a period against the C's.

The Bulls pulled within a basket twice in the last 2:08 of the opening quarter before Rasheed Wallace buried a 3 from the top of the circle for a 19-17 C's lead.

But the inevitable - a Celtics run - wasn't far off. And again it was the bench that blew open the game, with Shelden Williams, Marquis Daniels and House doing much of the damage.

Daniels kicked off a 14-2 run with a short jumper, Allen followed with a leaner that turned into a three-point play and House then drained a 3 as the C's lead grew to 35-21.

House buried his third jumper of the second quarter to up the advantage to 37-24, and Allen came up with another big three-point swing that pushed it to 40-24.

Allen's big quarter continued with two free throws and a jumper that pulled the C's ahead 44-29.

Garnett then returned and immediately dished to Kendrick Perkins and came back with two free throws for a 48-32 lead with 3:27 to go.

House continued to have a hot hand, polishing off his nine-point quarter with a jumper that gave the C's a 50-35 edge at the half.


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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: November 1, 2009


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