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Garnett, Rondo receive All-Defensive honors 05.06.09 at 2:22 pm ET
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Celtics forward Kevin Garnett was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team for the 2008-09 season. The former Defensive Player of the Year received 35 votes (13 First Team).

Rajon Rondo was named to the All-Defensive Second Team with 23 votes (4 First Team). Kendrick Perkins received four votes, including one First Team bid. Dwight Howard was the leading vote-getter.

2008-09 NBA ALL-DEFENSIVE FIRST TEAM

Dwight Howard, Orlando
Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers
LeBron James, Cleveland
Chris Paul, New Orleans
Kevin Garnett, Boston

2008-09 NBA ALL-DEFENSIVE SECOND TEAM

Tim Duncan, San Antonio
Dwyane Wade, Miami
Rajon Rondo, Boston
Shane Battier, Houston
Ron Artest, Houston

Read More: Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo,
Kenny Smith: Why Rondo can’t be dared to shoot at 12:04 am ET
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Rajon Rondo had a breakout performance in the first round of the playoffs against the Chicago Bulls. 19.4 points per game weren’t too shabby for a player once considered hampered by a jumpshot. As TNT analyst Kenny Smith explained on WEEI’s Dale & Holley show, he believes Rondo’s early struggles away from the basket have become an advantage for him.

Said Smith, “Well I always thought that when I was playing as a player, I thought that when you played against guys who you thought really couldn’t shoot from the outside and you backed up off of them, I thought that played to his advantage because then one, you gave him passing lanes, two you gave him the ability to take up the space and come at you and put you on your heels, and three how does a guy practice when he really doesn’t shoot the ball well by himself? They feed him the ball and no one’s there. So you’re actually feeding into the things he’s good at and then you make him a stronger player. And I think that teams at times have made him really, really good and then all of a sudden he starts to play good and he becomes great … I think now he’s gotten to a point where he understands how to do this and play at this level. But I really think a lot of times teams play into his hands because they give him shots that dare him to shoot and no one gets to this point in this league, especially at the point where Rondo is, and you can dare him to shoot and they’re not going to make it.’€

Rondo scored 14 points against the Orlando Magic in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Game 2 will be played on Wednesday night in Boston.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Kenny Smith, Rajon Rondo,
Game 6: Rondo gets a flagrant 04.30.09 at 7:47 pm ET
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Late in the first quarter of Game 6, Rajon Rondo got tangled up with Chicago’s Kirk Hinrich and appeared to throw Hinrich into the scorer’s table. Hinrich came back at Rondo with a shove and the two squared off. Rondo was assessed a Flagrant 1 Foul, a huge break for the Celtics because a Flagrant 2 would have resulted in his ejection and could have led to a possible suspension.

Hinrich was assessed a technical foul on the play. It was the culmination of a tightly-called first quarter that saw 15 fouls called.

Read More: Kirk Hinrich, Rajon Rondo,
No punishment for Rondo 04.29.09 at 4:37 pm ET
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According to the Boston Globe, an NBA official has confirmed Celtics guard Rajon Rondo will not face further action in response to his Game 5 foul on Brad Miller. The Bulls had argued Rondo committed a flagrant foul in the closing seconds of overtime. The Celtics and Bulls will play Game 6 on Thursday night in Chicago.

The league did hand down on punishment, though, on Wednesday. Dwight Howard was suspended for Game 6 of the Magic-76ers series for elbowing Samuel Dalembert in the face.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Brad Miller, Rajon Rondo,
Doc: We’ll let Brad Miller make a big deal of it at 2:44 pm ET
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WALTHAM – Doc Rivers stood by his starting point guard at a brief shootaround this afternoon prior to the team’s departure for Chicago and Game 6 on Thursday.

Rivers reiterated that he didn’t think that Rajon Rondo was trying to hurt Brad Miller when he committed a hard foul on him with 2.0 seconds remaining in overtime.

“I don’t think Rondo fouled to hurt him or anything like that,” Rivers said. “I thought Rondo was clearly trying to go for it and then couldn’t reach hiand then was just trying to grab anything he could grab. But Brad Miller clearly wants to make a big deal of that so we’ll let him.”

Read More: Brad Miller, Celtics, NBA playoffs, Rajon Rondo
Rondo’s foul: Flagrant, or not? at 12:47 pm ET
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With time winding down in Game 5, Brad Miller caught the Celtics in a frantic switch and drove hard to the basket. Trailing behind the play Rajon Rondo reached forward and made contact with Miller’s face, which did two things. It prevented Miller from dunking to tie the game and it also drew blood.

The Bulls protested after the play that it should have been a flagrant foul since, in their opinion, Rondo didn’t attempt to make play a play on the ball. The Celtics, obviously, contend that it was good hard playoff foul.

Naturally, opinion in Boston is of the latter interpretation, but they are up in arms, so to speak, about the play in Chicago.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Last night in Orlando, Dwight Howard clocked Philly’s Sam Delambert with an elbow. That, as True Hoop’s Henry Abbott points out should have resulted in an ejection.

Now the question becomes: What, if anything, will the NBA do about this?

Here’s a video with both plays (via True Hoop):

UPDATE: According to a report by ESPN’s Chris Sheridan, the NBA is reviewing both plays.

Here’s the flagrant foul interpretation from Sheridan:

“If Rondo’s foul is upgraded to a flagrant-category 1, he would be assessed one flagrant foul point. Players earn an automatic one-game suspension if they accumulate four flagrant foul points during the postseason. If the foul is upgraded to a flagrant-2, Rondo would be suspended for Game 6 in Chicago on Thursday night.”

UPDATE II: Howard was suspended for Game 6 and it appears that there will be no further action taken against Rondo.

Read More: Brad Miller, Dwight Howard, Rajon Rondo,
Doc: Celtics have to get Ray open 04.19.09 at 3:00 pm ET
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The day after losing Game One in overtime to Chicago, the Celtics honed in on their mistakes with a lengthy film session. They focused on sticking with their game plan, taking away the Bulls transition game, and making the second pass. And after Ray Allen went 1-for-12 on Saturday, they focused on getting him the open shot.

“We’ve got to do a better job of getting Ray open. We didn’t set enough picks for Ray,” said Doc Rivers. “So we’ve got to get him open, give him more time. I think he had two good looks, one was late in the game, but even that, the pass was late. I told them that shooters have to have the ball in their rhythm and they have to have time. And I thought when our shooters were open, we didn’t get them the ball in time and we threw them off rhythm. And then a lot of times they were not open because we didn’t set good picks.”

Rives stressed the importance of playing as a team, not being “the guy.” On Saturday, the Celtics dished 16 assists, nearly seven less than their season average.

“The way our team is built, especially now with KG out, we need to get out and break a little bit more, get Paul and Ray easy shots, get them to the free throw line, so that way their jumpshots will flow easier,” said Rajon Rondo.

Sunday’s practice wrapped with a three-pointer … by Ray Allen.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen,
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