Grantland: State of the Lakers-C's rivalry

January, 21, 2014
Jan 21
10:05
AM ET
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesKelly Olynyk emerges from the Celtics locker room.
Over at Grantland, Charlie Pierce takes a look at the state of the Lakers-Celtics rivalry (and there's a whole bunch on Rajon Rondo in there, too):
Eddie Lacerte and Gary Vitti once taped the ankles of Larry Bird and Magic Johnson. They once popped back in the dislocated fingers of Kevin McHale and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Now they work on the various joints and ligaments of Kelly Olynyk and Ryan Kelly, and that’s really the way you judge how the time passes. First, the players are younger than you are, then the coaches are, then the general managers are, and then the owners are, and that really stings because they’re all gazillionaires, and the only people you recognize are the guys at the end of the bench with the scissors and the tape and the weary eyes that have seen it all, and the Celtics and Lakers seem like just another stop along the road, two teams that were a combined 28-51 going into Friday’s game, each the loser of 12 of its last 14 games.

Which is a damned shame because the game, while choppy and erratic, was vastly entertaining. Boston point guard Rajon Rondo played for the first time in nearly a year. The Celtics had a lead most of the way, only to have their defense give out at precisely the wrong time and have themselves outscored 13-2 in the game’s last four minutes. If it wasn’t mythic, it was contested hard enough to stand for what remains of this rivalry as both teams try to rebuild themselves.

(Read full story on Grantland)

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jeff Green
PTS AST STL MIN
18.8 1.7 0.9 33.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 7.9
AssistsJ. Nelson 7.3
StealsJ. Nelson 1.7
BlocksK. Olynyk 0.8