The Christmas spirit wasn't in display the last time these two teams met, with Rajon Rondo, Gerald Wallace, and Kris Humphries getting ejected. As a result, the C's haven't had Rondo for a full game in either of their two games against Brooklyn. Rondo was hurt with Leandro Barbosa filling in when they lost 102-97, and then he missed most of the 95-83 loss after the fight. But that was a different Brooklyn team: in the second game, they were riding a four-game win streak. Then, Brook Lopez got hurt, and although he's now back in the lineup, the team hasn't gotten much better, losing eight of its last 11 games. Boston hasn't done well either, regressing to .500 thanks to losses in four of the Celtics' last five games.
The game starts a four-game road trip that will take the Celtics into 2013. They're only 4-8 on the road thus far this year, something they'll need to change sooner rather than later if they hope to make a run to the playoffs. Rajon Rondo's season is still ridiculous, but he's had a bit of a dropoff: after over 30 straight games with 10 assists or more, he's failed to hit double digits in three of four games while looking to score more than usual.
Here's the info on how to catch the game:
Tuesday, Dec. 25
Boston Celtics vs. Brooklyn Nets, 12 p.m., ESPN