By Jason Schott – BrooklynFans.com Reporter / Assignment Editor – @JESchott19
The Boston Celtics celebrated Christmas Day by beating the Nets 93-76, in a game that featured some bitterness like their last matchup. For Brooklyn, this is a step back after a nice win Sunday over Philadelphia.
The Nets committed 20 turnovers in the game, with Brook Lopez and Deron Williams committing four each.
Lopez said of the turnovers, “I know I am definitely a culprit of some of the turnovers. I just have to focus more on taking care of the ball and making sure we have some good possessions. That would help decrease the turnovers.”
The team also had a tough day shooting the ball, making just 40.6 percent of their shots. Lopez (5-for-12) and Joe Johnson (4-for-14) led the Nets with 15 points each.
Kris Humphries was ruled out for the Boston and Milwaukee games with a mild abdominal strain.
Because of that, Keith Bogans was back in the starting lineup, but was not as effective as he was on Sunday. He played just 15 minutes and made just one basket and had three points overall.
After an even first quarter in which the Nets led 24-22, the Celtics took the game over in the second quarter, outscoring the Nets 34-18 in the frame.
Boston led 56-42 at the half and kept that big lead until late in the third quarter when the Nets cut it to 66-58 thanks to seven points from Joe Johnson.
The Celtics responded with a 14-3 run to open up an 80-61 lead, with Jared Sullinger and Jeff Green the key contributors.
Within that run, with 9:31 left in the fourth, a mild fight broke out between the Nets’ Gerald Wallace and the Celtics’ Kevin Garnett, picking up where they left off from their last meeting on November 28th in Boston.
This did not escalate too much, but each were assessed a technical.
Wallace was involved in another incident with the Celtics’ Jared Sullinger, who fouled Wallace going up for a layup with 3:23 left. Sullinger grabbed Wallace around the neck, so Wallace shoved him back, but it was defused quickly.
Boston was led by Rajon Rondo, with 19 points on 8-for-16 shooting with just five assists. Paul Pierce had 10 assists, but only eight points. The key for Bosotn was their bench as Jared Sullinger had 16 points on 6-for-7 shooting and Jeff Green contibuted 15 points (5-for-8).
Pierce said of Sullinger, “We saw the way they were playing Kevin, so it allowed him to trap. It gave Jared a lot of open spaces a lot of the times and Rajon (Rondo) was able to penetrate and get him the ball. I found him in the gaps and had a lot of strong moves down low.”
WATCH postgame video of Celtics Head Coach Doc Rivers: