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February 29. 2012 10:12PM

Garnett, Rondo pace Celtics over Bucks


The Celtics' Kevin Garnett argues a call with an official during the second quarter of Boston's 102-96 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night at TD Garden. (Bob DeChiara-US PRESSWIRE)

Kevin Garnett led all five starters in double figures with 24 points and 10 rebounds as host Boston pulled back to .500 with a 102-96 win at home over the Milwaukee Bucks that dealt a blow to Milwaukee's playoff chances.

Rajon Rondo recorded a triple-double with 15 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for the Celtics (17-17), who have beaten the two teams chasing them for the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference on back-to-back nights.

Boston led by 15 points with 2:56 left in the game when it pulled the starters and Milwaukee made things interesting. A 13-0 run cut it to a one-possession game but Garnett came back into the contest and hit four free throws over the final 14.4 seconds to seal it.

The Bucks (14-21) remain in 10th place in the East.

The Celtics trailed at the half on Wednesday before taking over with 8:55 left in the third, when Brandon Bass' three-point play kicked off a 25-6 run.

Chris Wilcox had the highlight of the burst with a driving dunk and Ray Allen got into the act with a behind-the-back dribble in the lane that shed the defense and led to a layup.

NOTES: Milwaukee leading scorer Brandon Jennings did not score until the final burst at the end of the game and finished with six points on 2-for-11 shooting ... Ersan Ilyasova led the Bucks with 25 points and 10 rebounds ... Boston, which ranks last in the NBA in rebounding, got the better of the boards on Wednesday, 52-49.


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