The night began with the Boston Celtics seeking answers to how they can move on without Rajon Rondo this season.
It ended with an emphatic 99-81 win over the Sacramento Kings which left Celtics Nation another question to mull over.
Are the Celtics (22-23) this good, or the Kings (17-30) that bad?
At this point in the season, it doesn't matter.
With the C's having already given away more games than they can afford, every win -- regardless of the opponent -- is a big one.
And this one was just that in every sense of the word even if the Celtics did what the Celtics seem to always do which is allow the game to get closer than it should be.
After spending a good chunk of the third quarter and early part of the fourth leading by 20 or more points, the Celtics saw their lead down to 82-67 following a pair of free throws by Sacramento's Tyreke Evans with 10:21 to play.
But the Celtics soon increased their lead to 20-plus points and never looked back.
Finishing strong by Boston was similar to how the C's began the game.
Boston opened with an 8-0 run only to allow the Kings to get back in the game and close out the first quarter with a 6-0 spurt of their own to lead, 24-22, going into the second.
That's when the C's went into takeover-mode, completely dominating Sacramento in every phase of play.
Boston wound up scoring a season-high 37 second-quarter points which gave them a decisive 59-38 lead at the half.
Such a dominate showing was nothing new to the C's who delivered a similar first-half pounding to the Atlanta Hawks recently only to give the lead away in the third quarter and ultimately lose in double overtime.
But the Kings and Hawks are nothing alike, as the Celtics proved in maintaining firm control of the game in the third quarter which ended with the C's ahead 80-60.
Celtics squash Kings, 99-81
CSN New England | Jan 31