CELTICS WIN OVER HEAT RE-CAP
April 1, 2012INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
CELTICS 91, HEAT 72:Paul Pierce scored 23 points and Rajon Rondo had his league-leading fifth triple-double as Boston mauled visiting Miami to extend its winning streak to five games.
Rajon had 16 points, 14 assists and 11 rebounds - his 13th consecutive game with double-double assists - as the Celtics won their eighth straight home game and beat the Heat for the eighth time in a row at TD Garden.
Brandon Bass had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds as Boston had all five starters score in double figures and moved one game ahead of Philadelphia atop the Atlantic Division.
LeBron James scored 23 points to pace Miami, which was limited to its lowest point total of the season and lost for the seventh time in the last 11 away from home.
Boston blew the game open in the third quarter, going on a 20-2 tear in a span of under 5 1/2 minutes to build a commanding 72-52 lead. The Celtics outscored the Heat 31-12 in the quarter.
Rondo got off to a fast start with 10 points, four rebounds and four assists in staking Boston to a 29-19 lead after the opening quarter.
The Heat battled back to tie it briefly before the Celtics took a 49-44 lead into the half, setting up the third-period eruption.
GAME NOTEBOOK: The Celtics improved to 15-5 since the All-Star break. Boston shooting guard Ray Allen sat out his sixth consecutive game with a sore right ankle. ... Rondo is averaging 13.5 assists over the last 13 games. ... Heat F Udonis Haslem rejoined the team after sitting out Friday's game due to personal reasons. ... Bass posted his fourth double-double of the season. ... Miami's Chris Bosh had 11 boards but scored only four points, matching his low from the season opener.