Rajon Rondo smelled blood in the water, and he took full advantage.
The Bulls point guard fell one rebound shy of a triple-double Tuesday night against the Celtics, posting an incredible stat line with 11 points, 9 rebounds, 14 assists and5 steals. His performance helped Chicago become just the second eight-seed in NBA history to take a 2-0 series lead over a conference top seed.
After the game, the Celtics' Avery Bradley said Rondo was calling them out near the end of the game.
"I looked around and a few times in the game guys were putting their heads down, I think getting down on themselves. But as a team, we have to stay together. The other team is looking at that. They're using that as motivation for themselves.I could even hear Rondo, like, 'Yeah, they gave up. They gave up.' But you never can let a team see that. You have to continue to be positive and go out there and play hard, no matter what the outcome is."
Perhaps the best example of this was in the fourth quarter when Marcus Smart appeared to flipoff a fan in the crowd after bricking a 3-pointer. Immediately after that, Rondo lobbed the ball up toCristiano Felicio for an alley-oop.
The Celtics will need to improve on the court, and apparently their mindset, before Game 3 if they want a chance to get back in this series.