Rajon Rondo became the Celtics' all-time single-season steals leader and moved into second on the team's assist list with a career-high 18 assists as the Celtics held off the Sacramento Kings, 94-86, on Friday night at TD Garden. Paul Pierce had 22 and Ray Allen added 20 to offset the game-high 30 of Carl Landry, the brother of Celtics' Marcus Landry. The Celtics clinched their third straight Atlantic Division crown before the end of the game when Carmelo Anthony beat the buzzer in Toronto, as Denver beat the Raptors.

Rajon Rondo was credited with a steal midway through the second quarter, his 168th of the season, helping him pass Rick Fox for the all-time single-season Celtics mark. He also had six assists in the first quarter to pass Sherman Douglas for second on the Celtics all-time single-season assist list with 684. It appeared Rondo also stole the ball less than a minute into Friday's game against Sacramento, which would have given him 168 for the season and a new single-season steals mark, passing Fox's old mark of 167 in the 1996-97 season.

The Celtics will not have the services of center Kendrick Perkins for Friday's game against Sacramento. The big man will rest his sore left knee. The team did not indicate how long Perkins is expected out of action. Rasheed Wallace will start in his place. For more, visit the Green Street blog. 

Michael Holley is back with another edition of his NBA Power Rankings, and he has the Celtics at No. 8. The Cavaliers hold the top spot, followed by the Lakers, Magic and Jazz. Click here to read the full story.

Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck checked in with the Dale & Holley show Thursday morning and talked about the Celtics' season. Said Grousbeck: "It has been up and down, we can't hide from that. You have to be honest with people and be honest with yourself. We've always felt, though, inside the team that this team has a chance, and that that was probably a lull in the middle of the season, not from being lazy, but from being tired or conserving energy. ... I think that's what's happened this year. I'm not trying to make make an excuse, that's just my honest opinion."

Celtics coach Doc Rivers made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Thursday morning to talk about the state of the Celtics. "We're closer," Rivers said. "I don't think anybody can say they're there right now as a team."

 

The Celtics beat the Nuggets Wednesday night, and you can make a convincing argument that this should not have been a surprise.



Rajon Rondo had a triple-double and Eastern Conference player of the week Paul Pierce continued his hot play with a team-best 27 points as the Celtics beat the Denver Nuggets, 113-99, on Wednesday at TD Garden. The win officially clinched a playoff berth for the Celtics. Rondo recorded his second triple-double of the season and seventh career - including playoffs - with 11 points, 15 assists and 11 rebounds while Kevin Garnett added 20 points and 10 rebounds. The Celtics (46-25) won their fourth straight home game, the first time this season they've accomplished the feat.

Celtics president Danny Ainge made his weekly appearance on The Big Show Wednesday and told Glenn Ordway, "I feel good about this team. I think we're finally there." Ainge also touched on a variety of topics, including Antoine Walker, the battle for the third seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs and why the team has played so well on the road but struggled at home.

 

WEEI's Cedric Maxwell, interviewed on ESPN's "Outside the Lines," commented that former Celtics All-Star Antoine Walker was "addicted to gambling." Maxwell's interview was part of a story that focused on how Walker, who has earned over $110 million in his playing career, now is virtually bankrupt. Former Celtics coach Rick Pitino (Walker's first coach in the NBA and at Kentucky) also is featured in the piece.

 

For more on the story, go to the Green Street blog.