Deflecting praise

March, 21, 2010
3/21/10
6:00
PM ET
Ronald Martinez/Getty ImagesRay Allen heads the other way with a steal.
During the first half of Saturday's win over the Dallas Mavericks, a Celtics defender got his hand on an entry pass, deflecting the ball back towards the perimeter. Unfortunately for Boston, it bounced right to Jason Terry, who spotted up and drilled an open jumper.

But good efforts don't go unnoticed and Celtics coach Doc Rivers spotlighted his team's active defense following the win.

"Paul [Pierce] kept his hands up, he was active, and [Rajon] Rondo had some great deflections," said Rivers. "Our deflections were way up tonight. We chart them, and they were way up. Even when they were scoring in that one stretch, we kept getting our hands on the ball, and they kept getting it back and scoring. But, you just think, at the end of the day, if you keep getting enough deflections, one of them will bounce your way and it will break the game open."

And that's what happened Saturday. With Boston clinging to a four-point lead with 90 seconds to play, Dirk Nowitzki lost control of the ball beyond the arc and while scrambling to pass it off to the wing, Paul Pierce deflected the pass. Pierce quickly chased the ball down and fed Rondo up ahead for a breakaway layup and a six-point cushion with 1:18 to play, essentially sealing the victory.

Those deflections helped Boston finish with 12 steals, including a season-high five for Kevin Garnett.

Chris Forsberg

Celtics reporter, ESPNBoston.com

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?

PODCASTS

Capital Games with Andy Katz and Rick Klein

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Congressman Peter King join the debut podcast to discuss security at this year's Boston Marathon.

Inside Out with Prim Siripipat

Boston Marathon runner Demi Clark and her husband Brian, talk about the impact of witnessing the bombings last year. Dr. Jonathan Katz speaks about dealing with trauma.

Hockey Today

Scott Burnside is joined by Craig Custance, Katie Strang, Joe McDonald and Pierre LeBrun to break down each series of the first round of the 2014 NHL playoffs.

Baseball Tonight

Buster Olney talks with Tim Kurkjian and Aaron Boone about the Braves hot start, the Nationals' injury woes, John Farrell's ejection after a blown replay and much more.

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jeff Green
PTS AST STL MIN
16.8 1.7 0.7 34.2
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 8.1
AssistsR. Rondo 9.8
StealsR. Rondo 1.3
BlocksK. Humphries 0.9