Rajon Rondo had 26 points and eight assists as the Boston Celtics were blown out by the Chicago Bulls, 100-89, on Tuesday night from United Center in Chicago, IL.
The Celtics opened up the second half by attacking the hoop, not settling for jumpers and getting in Chicago's lanes on the defensive end.
That all changed toward the end of the third quarter, when Boston was unable to cut a Bulls lead under three.
Boston used a 6-0 run to open the second half, as they cut the lead to three before Chicago and Carlos Boozer's quick four points assisted in pushing the lead back to eight. It would be a free throw shootout over the next three minutes of the contest, with both teams combining for 10 attempts over that span while they simply traded buckets. The Celtics would cut the lead down to three yet again, as Rondo scored 10 points to push Boston back into the contest.
Rondo exited at the 3:40 mark, sitting until less than a minute remained in the third as the Boston offense remained scoreless in his absence. When he returned, Rondo got to the line with just over a second left in the quarter to cut Chicago's lead to 79-70 entering the fourth.
As Nate Robinson connected on back-to-back three pointers, the Celtics struggled to find any offensive rhythm, connecting on only one shot over the first eight minutes of the fourth quarter while the Bulls continued to pour it on. Robinson had 12 points in the final frame and the Bulls ran past the Celtics, who had two days of rest before playing in Chicago.
Joakim Noah got his second career triple-double for the Bulls, recording 13 rebounds, 11 points and 10 assists in the blowout win. The Boston bench combined for 16 points, with most of those coming in garbage time.
It was Boston's third-straight loss on what has been a terrible road trip, losing all three games in the 80's while their opponent scored 100 or more points.
The Celtics will travel back home Wednesday, where they will look to get back on track against Kyrie Irving and the Cleveland Cavaliers from TD Garden at 7:30 pm ET.
For more Boston Celtics coverage, check out our team blog, Celtics Blog.