BOSTON Rebounding was once again a hot topic of postgame discussion for the Celtics.
But instead of the usual lamenting about how the C's were getting beat up on the boards, the talk Sunday night was instead all about how Boston pushed, poked and punished the Orlando Magic. The end result was a surprisingly comfortable rebounding margin (plus-9) that catapulted the C's to a 116-110 overtime win against the Magic.
Boston was particularly effective on the offensive boards by grabbing 17 which was instrumental in the C's generating a season-high 21 second-chance points.
The Celtics big men like Brandon Bass have been hearing all season about how bad Boston is when it comes to rebounding. And with good reason: Boston came into Sunday's game as the worst rebounding team in the NBA.
Even though that won't change following Sunday's performance, it did serve as a blueprint of sorts for what the C's have to do in order to be better on the glass moving forward.
"We have to be more assertive as a group to be more aggressive as far as rebounding," said Brandon Bass who grabbed a team-high 12 rebounds for the Celtics. "I was just trying to do my part."
As good as Bass was rebounding the ball, he was by no means the lone player helping Boston deliver their most lopsided rebounding margin this season. In addition to Bass, Boston also got six boards -- all on the offensive end of the floor -- from Jared Sullinger off the bench.
Point guard Rajon Rondo barely missed his first triple-double of the season as he tallied 15 points, 16 assists and nine rebounds.
The biggest difference was that, for a change, Boston made a conscious decision to attack the offensive glass early and often.
"It was just a team effort as far as continuously crashing the glass, the offensive boards and defensively," Rondo said. "We all crashed the boards."
While the crashing of the boards certainly stood out, the ability of Rondo and Boston's other guards to limit dribble penetration was just as important to the dominate board play.
"Doc made an emphasis on just rebounding the ball as a team collectively," Rondo said. "Try to keep guards out of the paint which allow the bigs to stay on big's bodies and rebound the basketball."
Not only did it prevent the Magic from having multiple opportunities to score, but it also resulted in the Celtics getting a season-high 105 shots.
"We were running a lot more; we got up a lot more shots," Rondo added. "I don't know if we got up that many since I got here, even including overtime. We pushed the pace. It was a good win."