Facing the team that traded him away to the Celtics for Kendrick Perkins, Jeff Green scored 17 points and led a revitalized bench as the Celtics held on to beat the Thunder, 108-100, Friday night at TD Garden. Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 27 and led an impressive display of 3-point shooting, as he and Jason Terry each drained 4-of-5 from long range, helping Boston finish 9-of-17 from beyond the arc.
Rajon Rondo finished with 16 assists, extending his streak of double-digit assists to 36 games, one shy of John Stockton for second-best in NBA history. Magic Johnson is now within reach at 46 games. Rondo can match Stockton Sunday evening in Orlando and could match Johnson on Dec. 15 in San Antonio.
The Celtics moved back over .500 at 7-6 with the win and handed Kevin Durant and the Thunder just their fourth loss in 13 games. Durant (29 points) and Westbrook (26) paced the Thunder.
The Thunder displayed their athleticism early on, jumping out to a 28-19 lead, thanks to nine first-quarter points from Durant. Westbrook added eight point in the opening quarter as the Thunder led 28-21. Green kept the Celtics close with six points in the first quarter and provided big minutes off the bench. The Celtics picked up the defensive intensity in the second quarter, forcing seven of the Thunder's 11 first-half turnovers. The defense sparked the Celtics to a 27-17 advantage in the period and helped them take a 48-45 lead when Jason Terry hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
The Celtics opened the third quarter on a 7-2 run that helped them open up a 55-47 lead, with Pierce hitting a pair of threes. But it was Green who kept the Celtics rolling. He had seven straight points in an 11-0 Celtics run toward the end of the quarter that helped the Celtics open up a 77-64 lead. The Thunder dealt Green to the Celtics along with Nenad Krstic for Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson at the trading deadline on Feb. 25, 2011.
Pierce's fourth three of the night with 9:53 left in the fourth expanded the Celtics' lead to 84-70. In his return to Boston, Perkins finished with just five points and nine rebounds in 30 minutes. The Thunder drew to within six, 93-87, with five minutes left but Kevin Garnett responded with four points in a 6-0 run to push the lead back to 12, 99-87, with 4:20 left. The Celtics went up, 101-89, on a Terry jumper before the Thunder responded again. Durant's three with 2:52 left closed the Celtics' lead to seven, 101-94. Durant and Westbrook followed with free throws as the Celtics lead dwindled to three, 101-98, with 1:56 left.
Durant missed a three in transition and Garnett hit a pair of free throws with 1:01 left to snap the Thunder's 9-0 run and put Boston up, 103-98. Terry's fourth trey of the night from the left wing with 36.7 seconds left put the Celtics up 106-98 and sealed the win. The Celtics are off Saturday before traveling to Orlando for a game Sunday night at 6 p.m. against the Magic. The Celtics return to the Garden next Wednesday to play host to the Brooklyn Nets.
We check in for our weekly update from Bill Belichick and get his take on the Pats win over the Texans on the road, the benching of Stevan Ridley, and Antonio Smith's thinly veiled Spygate comments after the Texans lost.
Patriots’ defensive end, Rob Ninkovich, joins Mut and Merloni on a Patriots Monday after the team’s victory in Houston. Rob addresses the postgame comments of Texans’ defensive lineman Antonio Smith and the defense struggling against the run.
Tom Brady joined the show fresh off the teams 9th win of the season in Houston. He dismissed Antonio Smith's spying allegations and told the guys he has already moved on.
Eagle checks in to give Grande and Max a perspective on the Brooklyn Nets after they acquired Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett via trade earlier this summer. He breaks down what he thinks the future holds for the Nets after completing this blockbuster deal.
Sean Grande and Cedric Maxwell take some time and look back at the history between the Celtics and the Lakers, specifically the legendary rivalry between Magic and Bird. Legendary broadcaster, Ian Eagle, checks in to give the Brooklyn perspective as KG and Paul Pierce settle into their new home. Sean and Max also reveal the behind the scenes details surrounding Max’s famous “I got the ball” moment.
In the first hour of this edition of the Celtics Summer Cooler, Grande and Max analyze the trade that sent Fab Melo out of Boston. Also in this hour, Max sets the story straight about his history with Larry Bird.
Rob Bradford and Alex Speier talk with Jon Lester about contract negotiations, losing a teammate like Jacoby Ellsbury, the World Series run, and looking ahead to 2014.
Rob Bradford and Alex Speier are back witht he Hot Stove Show. They talk about Jacoby Ellsbury signing with the New York Yankees, the Red Sox signings of AJ Pierzynski and Edward Mujica, and wrap it up with Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester, who talks about the World Series run, losing a teammate like Ellsbury and looking towards 2014.
The Red Sox new catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, joined the show to discuss his reputation as the most hated man in baseball. He also said that he turned down multi-year deals to come and win in Boston.
Shawn Thornton joined the show and discussed the teams long layoff leading into their game tomorrow night in Montreal. He told the guys that he anticipates fighting being a part of hockey for years to come.
Lucic joins Danny Picard to talk some hockey after the team’s overtime win against the Carolina Hurricanes. Danny asks Lucic about David Krejci’s game winner yesterday and hockey outsiders that are trying to change the game.
Shawn Thornton joined the show fresh off his big night at MSG and talked about his recent goal scoring prowess. Shawn said that no matter who his line mates are he is always going to be a fourth liner.
Kirk Minihane answered any and all questions from the listeners and John and Gerry.
The New York Post's Joel Sherman joined the show with his thoughts on jacoby Ellsbury's signing with the Yankees. He said that if it were up to him he would have given the money to Robinson Cano over Ellsbury.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane. They discussed how Ron Burgundy has officially jumped the shark and played sound of him on Dan Patrick.
Peter King joins Mut and Merloni to go across the NFL and address the latest news. He discusses Kubiak's firing, Tomlin's fine, and Dennard's possible suspension.
Brick makes his weekly appearance on Mut and Merloni and discusses the Bruins loss to Montreal and the hit on Johnny Boychuck.
Michael Fabiano, fantasy expert and Yankees fan, gives his opinion on the Cano signing, discusses Julian Edelman's rising fantasy value, and actually suggests starting Ryan Fitzpatrick
We check in with Herm Edwards on the Pats, Stevan Ridley, and a great many things around the NFL.
We stir up a pot of crap when we debate the world cup and the popularity of soccer... pro callers, con-callers, plus Jack Edwards!
We tackle four topics at 4PM.
Ryder talks with WEEI.com's Chris Price about the Patriots upcoming game with the Cleveland Browns, and Stevan Ridley's status on the team.
Alex joins the show and gives his thoughts on the Jacoby Ellsbury deal, and what prospects the Red Sox have to fill the hole left in the lineup, or trade pieces to get a player who can fill the void.
John talks to Rob and gets his thoughts on the Yankees signing Jacoby Ellsbury, the Red Sox signing AJ Pierzynski, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia signing with Miami.
Mike Lupica of the Daily News joined the show to give the New York reaction to the Ellsbury signing. He said that the Yankees drastically overpaid.More from this show
The Red Sox new catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, joined the show to discuss his reputation as the most hated man in baseball. He also said that he turned down multi-year deals to come and win in Boston.More from this show
Johnny Damon joins Mut and Merloni to clear the air about his free agent signing with the Yankees and discusses Ellsbury's signing.More from this show
Buster Olney joins Mut and Merloni to discuss Jacoby Ellsbury signing with the Yankees and the possibility of the Red Sox trading for Andre Ethier.More from this show