Celtics snap skid, crush Raptors, 96-73

645766.jpg

Celtics snap skid, crush Raptors, 96-73

BOSTON When you've lost as many games as the Boston Celtics, quality wins are the last thing you're thinking about.

A win - period - is all you want.

That's exactly what the Celtics got on Wednesday as they snapped a Big Three-era worst five game losing skid, with a 96-73 victory over the Toronto Raptors.

Boston (5-8), which has struggled in the first quarter, dominated the first 12 minutes to take a 29-14 lead into the second.

Toronto (4-11) cut into the C's lead, but Boston's control of the game was never in doubt.

Rajon Rondo dominated play, but not in the way that we're used to.

Rondo, who came into Wednesday's game as the NBA's co-leader in assists with Phoenix guard Steve Nash, was non-stop as a scorer.

He led all scorers with 21 points along with a season-low two assists.

Rondo's impressive scoring night could have been even better if not for a sore right wrist injury suffered with about two minutes to play after a hard foul by Toronto's Linas Kleiza.

Rondo did not return.

Kevin Garnett scored 15 points on 5-7 shooting, and Brandon Bass added 13 points and nine rebounds off the bench for the C's.

Toronto, playing without their top scorer Andrea Bargnani, was led by former UMass star Gary Forbes who had 18 points off the Raptors bench.

Quotes, notes and stars: Betts belts three home runs

soxpost_053116_1280x720_696412227903.jpg

Quotes, notes and stars: Betts belts three home runs

Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 6-2 win over the Orioles.

 

QUOTES

"If he has a boy, he ought to make him Mookie after tonight's outing.'' - John Farrell on Jackie Bradley Jr., who left the team for a paternity leave after Mookie Betts slugged three homers.

"I know each day that I've got it. I wake up, I know I have it. I come to the field, I know I have it.'' - Xander Bogaerts on his ongoing hitting streak.

"He's probably one of the few guys, every time I see him hit, I think he's going to hit a homer. He's just that presence that he has in the batter's box.'' - Bogaerts on Betts.

"This is probably my best night; first time I've ever done that.'' - Betts, when asked where the game ranks individually for him in his career.

"I wanted to locate the heater good, not force it too much, don't try to throw hard - just try to throw strikes.'' - Eduardo Rodriguez on his season debut.

 

NOTES:

* Xander Bogaerts extended his hitting streak to 24 games, second-longest in baseball this season.

* Bogaerts has hit safely in 36-of-38 games at a .399 clip with 33 runs scored and 23 driven in.

* Eduardo Rodriguez two runs or fewer in each of his three career starts at Camden Yards.

* The Sox had back-to-back homers (Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia) for the first time this season.

* Mookie Betts had a three-homer game for the first time in his career.

* Betts became the first Red Sox player to homer three times in the same game since Will Middlebrooks did so on April 7, 2013.

* The last time the Sox began a game with back-to-back homers was July 27, 2011 when Jacoby Ellsbury and Pedroia did so.

* The Red Sox scored multiple runs in the first inning for the 20th time in 51 games.

* David Ortiz extended his own hit streak to eight games.

 

STARS:

1) Mookie Betts

Betts belted three homers -- one to left, one to center and one to right -- for the first time in his career and also contributed a brilliant diving catch in right in the seventh inning.

2) Eduardo Rodriguez

Rodriguez made his season debut and allowed two runs on six hits through six innings and didn't issue a single walk while fanning three.

3) Chris Young

Getting a rare start in center, Young made a spectacular catch to likely rob Manny Machado of a two-run homer, while drawing a walk and adding a single and a run scored.