NEW YORK — Rajon Rondo scored 19 points in his first full game against Brooklyn this season, and the Boston Celtics beat the Nets 93-76 on Tuesday in another game with some heated moments between the division rivals.
Rondo, sidelined in the first meeting and thrown out of the second after shoving Nets forward Kris Humphries into the courtside seats, outplayed counterpart Deron Williams and helped the Celtics take control early.
Rookie Jared Sullinger tied a career high with 16 points and Jeff Green had 15 for the Celtics (14-13), who avoided falling under .500 with just their second victory in six games.
Gerald Wallace and Brook Lopez each scored 15 for the Nets, who have lost four of five.
The Celtics took control with a 23-5 run in the second quarter. They had 11 assists on 13 baskets and outscored the Nets 34-18 in the period.
A month after the teams scuffled in Boston, there was another skirmish in the fourth quarter that resulted in four technical fouls, but that was the most fight the Nets put up in a disappointing performance on the national stage of the Christmas opener. They were never in the game after the first 20 minutes, and their fans headed to the exits with under 2 minutes left as a “Let’s go Celtics!” chant broke out.
Williams had only 10 points on 3-of-7 shooting and Joe Johnson, his partner in a high-priced backcourt, shot 4 of 14 for his 12 points.
Boston’s Kevin Garnett had eight points and 10 rebounds on the day he tied Charles Oakley for 15th place on the NBA’s career list with his 1,282nd game. He was also front and center when things got testy.
Wallace was fouled with 9:31 remaining and appeared to hold onto Garnett’s uniform to balance himself and not fall. But Garnett objected to how long Wallace hung on, and they said something to each other as they tried to push themselves free. That led to technical fouls on the two, along with Andray Blatche and Courtney Lee.