Pierce still waiting for breakout game

Pierce still waiting for breakout game
January 2, 2012, 6:13 pm
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BOSTON Rajon Rondo has had multiple big-game performances for the Celtics in this still-young NBA season.

Ray Allen has come up big. So has Jermaine O'Neal at different moments. Most recently, it was Kevin Garnett who shined.

Don't think for a minute that Paul Pierce doesn't recognize this, well aware that at some point he too will be needed to carry the C's to victory.

That time could be tonight when the Celtics cap off a back-to-back set of games against the Washington Wizards, the same Wizards team they beat 94-86 on Sunday.

"I'm going to be one of the last guys to have a breakout game, but that's all right," Pierce said. "I'm going to get into the flow as time goes along."

Pierce missed all of training camp minus one day of practice, and sat out the first three games with a bone bruise in his right heel.

In the two games since he returned, the captain has averaged 10.5 points, five rebounds and four assists. But the most important number of all is two, as in two wins in Pierce's two games.

Pierce expects his breakout game to come sometime this month.

"I'd say about eight games," Pierce said. "I use the eight games like a preseason; the eight game preseason we didn't have."

While he's in no rush, the schedule might speed up that timetable as early as tonight as the Celtics host one of the worst teams in the NBA.

Washington (0-4) is the only team in the NBA yet to win a game. This would mark the fourth time in franchise history that the Wizards (and formerly the Bullets) were the last team to win a game with the most recent occurrence being in 2008.

"We still have a lot of work to do," said Wizards guard Roger Mason Jr. "I see a lot of things that we are doing that are encouraging for the future of this season, but we still need to get that first win."