Celtics Host Clippers in Search of First January Winning Streak

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Celtics Host Clippers in Search of First January Winning Streak The last time the Celtics met up with the Los Angeles Clippers, everything went well until the final second.

Baron Davis' buzzer-beating jumper was a dagger through the Celtics' hearts, as it served them a 92-90 loss in their first visit to the Staples Center this season. Since that setback, it's been all downhill for the Celtics, who are 5-7 since losing to the Clips on that Dec. 27 night. After two days of rest following an overtime win at home over Portland, the C's will look to shake off the rust and get revenge for last month's loss.

When and Where

Monday, Jan. 25, 7:30 p.m. ET (CSNE)
TD Garden, Boston, Mass.

Records

Celtics (28-13, first place in Atlantic Division, second place in Eastern Conference)
Clippers (20-23, third place in Pacific Division, 12th place in Western Conference)

Head to Head

Prior to the December defeat, the C's lost a 93-91 close match back on Feb. 25, 2009 but avenged that loss less than a month later by topping the Clips 90-77 at home on March 23.

Skinny

It looks like the Clippers are headed straight for the draft lottery again in 2010 — a lot of good it did them last time. Last summer, the Clips pulled down the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft and the rights to Blake Griffin, and there were hopes that Griffin could turn the franchise around. But Griffin's now out for the season, the Clips are floundering offensively, and it's another year near the bottom of the Western Conference for Mike Dunleavy's squad.

Starting Lineups

Celtics
Point guard: Rajon Rondo
Shooting guard: Ray Allen
Small forward: Paul Pierce
Power forward: Kevin Garnett
Center: Kendrick Perkins

Clippers
Point guard: Baron Davis
Shooting guard: Rasual Butler
Small forward: Al Thornton
Power forward: Marcus Camby
Center: Chris Kaman

Stat Sheet

Celtics
The Celtics are 1-4 against the Pacific Division this season. The one win was a 109-95 win over the Warriors on Nov. 18.

They have 972 total assists this season. That ranks fourth behind the Jazz, Suns and Mavericks.

Kendrick Perkins has 17 blocks in his last five games. He's now tied for fourth in the NBA with 87 this season.

Paul Pierce
is one of just three qualified leaders in the NBA this season shooting 47 percent or better from 3-point range this season. The other two are Daniel Gibson and Jared Dudley.

Rajon Rondo is shooting 17-for-30 in his last two games for 40 total points.

Kevin Garnett had 13 points, four rebounds and three assists on Friday night against Portland, making his first appearance of 2010.

Ray Allen
has 23.1 points per game in 29 career meetings with the Clippers.

Clippers

The Clippers have 13 double-digit losses this season.

They are 31.1 percent from 3-point range as a team this season. Only three NBA teams — the Nets, Pistons and Timberwolves — are worse.

Chris Kaman has 20.4 points per game this season, tops on the Clippers and most in the NBA among full-time centers.

Marcus Camby
ranks third in the NBA with 12.0 rebounds per game, trailing only Dwight Howard and Joakim Noah.

Baron Davis is sixth in the NBA with 8.2 assists per game.

Al Thornton
is shooting 47.6 percent from the floor this season, a career best.

Rasual Butler is 74-for-86 from the free-throw line this season for a career-high 86.0 percent.

Black and Blue

Celtics
Kevin Garnett, who missed nearly a month with a hyperextended knee, returned Friday night against Portland.

Brian Scalabrine has a separated right shoulder. He will miss about a week.

Marquis Daniels, who underwent left thumb surgery in December, is targeting a return around the All-Star break.

Clippers
Eric Gordon
has missed the Clippers' last two games with a sprained left big toe.

Blake Griffin is recovering from a stress fracture in his left knee. He underwent surgery this fall and will not play this season.

Sebastian Telfair
has a strained right groin and a torn tendon. He will miss four to six weeks.

This Date in Celtics History

In 2003, the University of Kansas basketball team holds a ceremony to retire the No. 34 jersey worn by Celtics captain Paul Pierce. Pierce has worn No. 34 since his sophomore year in high school in Inglewood, Calif. — he wore it with the Jayhawks from 1995 to '98.

Overheard

"I told him last year when he was out that it was good to even have his voice on the bench, because it was so important for the young bigs so early in their careers to have his voice in their heads. Definitely, with him back in the lineup, there is a trickle-down effect."
–Ray Allen, in Monday's Boston Herald, on the impact of Kevin Garnett in the wake of his return Friday night against Portland

Press Box

Celtics
The Celtics beat Portland on Friday.

Ray Allen hit a big shot in OT.

Kevin Garnett is back, and the C's are better off.

Clippers
The Clips finally won on the road.

Welcome aboard, Jameson Curry.

Chris Kaman proves his worth.

NBA
The Mavericks utterly annihilated the Knicks.

Hedo Turkoglu
hit a clutch free throw against the Lakers.

Daniel Gibson stole Oklahoma City's thunder.

Outlook

Even though it's against a third-place team, this is a big game for the Celtics — they need to prove that they're out of last week's losing funk for good. The OT win over the Blazers was a good step, but the C's need a definitive win.

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