Like most NBA teams, the Celtics conduct their practices behind a veil of secrecy. Actually, they do their business behind a curtain, which goes down over the viewing area from the media room’s perch above their practice court in Waltham.



PAUL FLANNERY

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For the first time since undergoing knee surgery in the offseason, Kendrick Perkins was able to participate in part of a Celtics practice. Perkins went through the non-contact phase of practice and the team's warmup stretching routine. "I felt all right," Perkins said. "My timing was a little bit off. I thought I did pretty well for my first time out." 

 

Celtics center Jermaine O'Neal went through his second practice with the team since he injured his knee in early November and said there was a chance he would be able to play Wednesday when the Celtics host the 76ers at TD Garden. "I’d say it’s a 50-50 chance," O'Neal said. "At some point I’m going to play this week, whether it’s tomorrow or Christmas Day [against Orlando.]. I think I’m doable. I can help the team but for how long I don’t know." 

 

Celtics center Shaquille O'Neal served as a guest conductor for the Boston Pops Orchestra, along with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, Monday night, guiding the groups during the playing of "Sleigh Ride." The event was part of the Holiday Pops concert at Boston's Symphony Hall.

Paul Pierce was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week by the NBA after averaging 21.7 points, 8.7 assists and 8.3 rebounds in three games for the week of Dec. 13-through-Dec. 19. Pierce recorded a triple-double against the Pacers Sunday, his first since 2006, and made the game-winning shot against the Knicks over Amar'e Stoudemire in a 32-point, 10-rebound performance. Pierce also had 15 points and 10 assists in a win over the Hawks and the Celtics have won 13 straight games. The Spurs' Tony Parker won for the Western Conference.

 

Paul Pierce has a great little saying that he has been using more and more in recent weeks: “I just try to give the game what it needs.”



PAUL FLANNERY

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The Celtics extended their win streak to 13 games thanks to a 99-88 win over the Pacers Sunday afternoon at TD Garden. Paul Pierce, Nate Robinson, and Glen Davis all led the way with 18 points apiece, while Ray Allen contributed with 17. Pierce finished with a triple-double, coming away with 12 assists and 10 rebounds. Center Shaquille O'Neal made his presence felt in returning to the starting lineup, netting a much-needed 11 points considering back-up center Semih Erden was limited with a groin injury.

When Danny Ainge made official on The Big Show Thursday afternoon what everyone suspected – that Rajon Rondo was going to be out for “a few weeks” – it would have been easy for the Celtics to say, enough. No more.



PAUL FLANNERY

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Kevin Garnett inspired the weary and wounded Celtics with 17 points and 14 rebounds in a 102-90 win over the Atlanta Hawks at TD Garden on Thursday night. The victory extended Boston's winning streak to 12, matching their longest since they set the franchise record of 19 back in the 2008-09 season. Glen Davis had 18 points off a shorthanded Celtics bench. 

 

The Celtics will not only be without Rajon Rondo Thursday against the Hawks, they will also be missing the services of Shaquille O'Neal for the fourth straight game, leaving the Celtics with just 10 players in uniform. Celtics president Danny Ainge told The Big Show Thursday afternoon that Rondo will be out for a couple of weeks.