Rajon Rondo paced the Celtics early on, scoring 10 of his team-high 17 points in the first eight minutes to lead Boston past the Toronto Raptors 81-73 last night at TD Garden. The C’s look fresh and prepared to begin their 66-game regular season run after sweeping Toronto in their two-game preseason series.
Reserve Brandon Bass, recently acquired in a deal that sent Glen Davis to Orlando, scored 12 points in 18 minutes. Celtics second-round draft pick E’Twaun Moore contributed 11 points and four rebounds.
Jermaine O’Neal controlled the paint with four blocks during his 12 minutes on the floor. “He defends the basket, man,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. “His blocked shots, his timing – it’s just amazing. He looks great. What you saw is what he’s been all camp.”
Paul Pierce missed both games with a heel injury. The captain will be questionable for the Christmas Day season opener against the New York Knicks. The Celtics will open at home Friday, December 30th against the Detroit Pistons after challenging the Knicks, Heat and Hornets on the road. Boston Celtics tickets are now available!