GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

February 12, 2013

Crunch Time


Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Better without Rondo?

The Celtics have clearly stepped up since Rajon Rondo tore his ACL which brings up the question, are the Celtics better without their star point guard?

I’m not sure I would go that far but the Celtics are certainly playing their best basketball of the season without the man who is presumed to be their best player. All of a sudden Boston’s bench is playing great as Jason Terry and Jeff Green are finally starting to show what they’re made of.

The Celtics are also moving the ball much better, when Rondo was healthy they would let the offense revolve around him and as a result was less diverse.

On the other hand, it’s clear that the Celtics have stepped it up in the effort department since Rondo has gone out and it’s unfair to blame the poor play of Terry and Green over the first half of the season on Rondo.

This debate will not be settled until playoff time, if Boston makes another playoff push without Rondo on the floor there is certainly validity to the claim that the team is better of without him. If not, it’s clear that the Celtics need to bring him back next season, and maybe even build around him.

Hot start

The Bruins continue to prove that they are amongst the NHL’s best with a 3-1 win at Buffalo on Saturday, a game that would have been a blowout if it weren’t for the stellar play of Sabres goalie Ryan Miller.

The Bruins are now 8-1-1 over the first 10 games of the season earning 17 of a possible 20 points on the season, which is a Bruins record. Boston’s previous best start in the first 10 games of the year came in the 1978-79 season where it earned 16 points and a 7-1-2 record.

The Bruins look like the team to beat in the Eastern Conference right now and by trading Tim Thomas they have a shot to improve significantly, that’s a scary thought for the rest of the league.

Record setting performance

Gloucester’s Jay Pratt had a shooting night to remember last week in Beverly’s 18 plus YMCA basketball league. The Gloucester native, a 1,000 point scorer at Gloucester High School and former Fitchburg State star, scored a whopping 77 points breaking the league’s single game scoring record in the process.

Pratt also broke the league’s single game three point record draining 24 shots from beyond the arc finishing the contest 24-31 from three point land and followed up a 45 point first half with a 32 point second half. Pratt’s team won the contest 130-54.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru