By A.Sherrod Blakely
SAN ANTONIO It was one of those games that Boston Celtics fans likely couldn't help but find themselves saying something they probably never thought they'd say: "Rondo, keep shooting the jump shot."
And the end result was an impressive 22-point, 14-assist night in helping the Celtics defeat the San Antonio Spurs, 107-97.
"Today, we kept moving the ball and Rondo kept taking shots," said coach Doc Rivers. "It was terrific. They just found the shots, and Rondo stepped up and took shots."
Rondo was 11-for-20 from the field, with seven of his made baskets being at least 13 feet away.
If he's knocking down those shots, and still managing to get his teammates involved, he becomes nearly unstoppable.
The Spurs' strategy against Rondo wasn't all that different than what most teams employ.
Rondo is at his best in transition, both as a scorer and as a distributor.
So defensively, you want to make it more of a half court game and force him to become a shooter.
The Spurs did just that -- and did he ever make them pay for it.
And when you factor in that Rondo is often on the floor with four other players who are even better shooters than he is, Rondo's ability to knock down jumpers makes the Celtics offense even more lethal.
"It gives them another scorer around the court," said Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. "He did a great job of knocking down shots tonight."