Recap: Celtics 88, Raptors 83
Updated On: Jan 15 2014 09:21:41 PM CST
Celtics 88, Raptors 83: Jared Sullinger had 25 points and a career-best 20 rebounds as host Boston halted a nine-game losing streak.Buoyed by the return of Rajon Rondo to the active roster - the point guard dressed but did not play - the Celtics won ugly, earning their first victory of 2014 despite shooting 34.5 percent from the field. Avery Bradley had 20 points while rookie Phil Pressey dished out a career-high 10 assists. DeMar DeRozan's 23 points paced the Raptors, who fell to 13-6 since dealing small forward Rudy Gay to Sacramento. Kyle Lowry added 18 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds while John Salmons had 13 points off the bench.Toronto held a narrow 25-23 lead after one quarter but couldn't make it stand up. Six straight points from Bradley surged the Celtics ahead near the midway point of the second, and Bradley added a slick layup as part of a quarter-closing 7-0 run that gave Boston a 45-41 advantage at the half.Poor Toronto shooting allowed Boston to pull away in the third, as a Bradley jumper made it a nine-point game and Sullinger's 3-pointer on Pressey's ninth assist of the night helped fuel the Celtics' 73-56 lead entering the fourth. The Raptors trimmed the gap thanks to a 13-2 run spanning the opening half of the final quarter, but they couldn't draw even as DeRozan missed his final four field-goal attempts and turned the ball over with less than 40 seconds remaining.GAME NOTEBOOK: Rondo was back on the bench for the first time since undergoing major knee surgery nearly a year ago. He's expected to be in the lineup Friday against the visiting Los Angeles Lakers. ... Sullinger's 20-20 performance is the seventh in the NBA this season. ... Toronto shot just 12-of-25 from the free-throw line.
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