Rondo finds his shooting stroke in San Antonio

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Rondo finds his shooting stroke in San Antonio

By A.Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com

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."

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached atsblakely@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Thomas strains right groin, says he'll 'be fine for Wednesday'

Thomas strains right groin, says he'll 'be fine for Wednesday'

The bumps and bruises continue to pile up for Isaiah Thomas, adding a new one to the group during Boston’s 107-106 loss at Houston. 
 
The 5-foot-9 guard said he strained his right groin in the second quarter, but added that the injury won’t force him to miss any games. 

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“I’ll be alright,” Thomas told reporters after the loss. “I’ll get treatment. I’ll be fine for Wednesday (against Orlando).”
 
The injury appeared to have happened shortly after Houston’s Trevor Ariza hit a 3-pointer that put the Rockets ahead 55-45.
 
At the time it didn’t seem all that serious as Thomas, who had 20 points on the night, came down and drained a 3-pointer. 
 
But after the game, Thomas acknowledged his groin did bother him during the game in which he played 33-plus minutes. 
 
“A few drives I didn’t have the lift,” said Thomas, who finished with 20 points. “It is what it is. I’ll figure it out.”
 
Thomas, who played in all 82 regular season games last season in addition to each of Boston’s 21 games this season, has dealt with an assortment of injuries including but not limited to, a swollen middle finger injury on his left (shooting) hand. 
 
Thomas, an All-Star last season for the first time, has played at an elite level that should once again position him to be represent the Eastern Conference. 
 
Following Monday’s game, Thomas is averaging a career-high 26.0 points per game which ranks ninth in the NBA along with 6.1 assists.