Celtics Vs. Wizards: Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo Shine As Boston Downs Washington, 104-88

Paul Pierce had 22 points and 12 rebounds and Rajon Rondo added 20 points and 13 assists as the Boson Celtics toppled the Washington Wizards, 104-88, on Friday night at TD Garden. John Wall had 20 points and seven assists for Washington. Read more at SB Nation D.C., as well as CelticsBlog and Bullets Forever.

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Celtics 104, Wizards 88: Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo Lead Boston Past Washington

Paul Pierce scored 22 points and had 12 rebounds and Rajon Rondo added 20 points and 13 assists as the Boston Celtics powered past the Washington Wizards, 104-88, on Friday night at TD Garden.

Boston (55-24) grabbed a 28-23 lead after one quarter, but was outscored by Washington, 33-31, in the second quarter. The second half was decisive for the Celtics, who scored 45 points while holding the Wizards to 32 points.

All five of the Celtics starting five scored in double digits, pacing a 50.7 percent shooting attack for Boston. Nenad Krstic finished with 17 points and six rebounds and Kevin Garnett totaled 15 points and 11 boards. Ray Allen finished with 13 points for Boston.

Andray Blatche had 20 points and grabbed 10 rebounds Wizards, who shot 45.5 percent from the field. John Wall scored 20 and had seven assists, Jordan Crawford added 19 points and JaVale McGee totaled 15 rebounds and 10 rebounds for Washington.

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Celtics vs. Wizards: C's Return Home Looking To Take Out Frustration On Woeful Washington

After Thursday night's tough loss at the hands of the Chicago Bulls, the Celtics no longer have to concern themselves with the top seed in the Eastern Conference, as they now trail Chicago by four games with four left to play. With that in mind, taking care of business so as to assure the No. 2 seed should be of the utmost importance and their first step in that regard comes Friday night with a home game against the lowly Washington Wizards at 7:30 p.m. EDT, on Comcast Sports Net New England.

The Celts (54-24) need to start building a bit of momentum with the playoffs just over a week away and the Wizards, with their 3-36 road record, look like a perfect opponent against whom to do just that. The C's torched Washington on Nov. 17 by the final count of 114-83 and although they dropped their last meeting with the Wizards (21-57), that one came at the Verizon Center in downtown D.C. In that 30-point bludgeoning, Paul Pierce led six Celtics in double figures with 23 points. The Wizards allow a league worst 109.4 points per game on the road while the C's, in winning their last two at the Garden, have shot 57.9 percent from the floor, including 11-of-21 from 3-point range.

The Wizards, who lost 136-112 to playoff bound Indiana in Wednesday night, have a couple of highlights against the C's this season. In their 85-83 win in Washington on Jan. 22, rookie point guard John Wall, the No. 1 overall pick in last year's draft, posted 16 points, six rebounds and four assists. It will be up to Rajon Rondo to slow down Wall; Rondo has put up 12.5 points and 11 assists against Washington so far this year.

In Thursday night's loss to the Bulls, the Celtics, 8-9 over the last month, shot just 38.4 percent and were outrebounded 44-35 in failing to capitalize on any momentum generated from their wins over Detroit and Philly on Sunday and Tuesday. They face their direct competition for that No. 2 seed on Sunday afternoon in Miami but given that they and the Heat are currently locked up with identical records, they can't afford to overlook the Wizards.

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