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Celtics blow 27-point lead against Hawks on way to sixth-straight loss

01.25.13 at 10:50 pm ET
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Avery Bradley attempts to guard Atlanta's Jeff Teague. (AP)

The Celtics blew a 27-point first-half lead, eventually dropping a double-overtime, 123-111 loss to the Hawks in Atlanta. It was the Celts’ sixth-straight defeat.

According to Celtics’ play-by-play announcer Sean Grande the C’s had won 153 straight games when leading by more than 19 points, having last blown a lead as much as 27 points on Dec. 5, 2003 in Phoenix.

The Celts, who had jumped out to a 29-10 lead after one quarter, finally succumbed to the affects of playing back-to-back games, being out-scored, 16-4, in the second overtime. The visitors were also outscored 21-2 to start the third quarter.

“I thought it changed once we put the starters in with about five minutes left in the second quarter,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers told reporters after the game, adding, “I told our guys you can’t win without humility. … We started breaking rules you can’t break in grade school.”

Both Kevin Garnett and Jared Sullinger fouled out, with Garnett playing 38 minutes (scoring 24 points), while the rookie failed to score 24 minutes.

Rajon Rondo did manager a triple-double, scoring 16 points, dishing out 11 assists and hauling in 10 rebounds. The Celtics’ bench also produced with the combination of Jeff Green, Courtney Lee and Jason Terry teamed for 45 points.

Atlanta exposed the Celtics from beyond the three-point line, with Kyle Korver making 8-of-12 from beyond the arc.

“It’s me,” Rivers said. “I have to figure out a way to push buttons with each individual. … I keep telling myself and telling my coaches we have the right group. But we have to act right.”

For a complete recap, click here.

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