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Rondo, Celtics turn up Heat on LeBron and Co.

The temperature remained in the 30s yesterday in Boston. Maybe that was enough to cool down the Miami Heat. If not the temperature, then it was Rajon Rondo.

The temperature remained in the 30s yesterday in Boston. Maybe that was enough to cool down the Miami Heat. If not the temperature, then it was Rajon Rondo.

Trailing the Heat by four points to start the third quarter, Rondo put the team on his back, scoring nine of his 11 points in the quarter to go with 10 rebounds and 10 assists. But, what he did on offense was nothing compared to the spark he gave on defense guarding LeBron James.

“That matchup made no sense, honestly,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. “And it hurt us a couple times. The only thing I saw honestly is that it gave us life. Because he was trying so hard and working so hard, it just sort of forced everybody else to join in.”

The C’s held the Heat to just 27-percent shooting in that third quarter, and jumped out to a 13-point lead at its conclusion — enough to hold off a Heat fourth-quarter run.

“We know what Rondo is capable of doing,” Kendrick Perkins said. “He turned it up another notch. When he picked [James] up, the energy just picked up and the guys kind of backed him up after that.”

With the injuries piling up, the C’s went with just a seven-man rotation. It was all they’d need.

“We’re shorthanded but we’re not short of heart and grit,” Kevin Garnett said. “We work hard. We will come out here and we will compete and we’re at home and we’re still a good team.”

 
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