Rondo absence boosts Celtics

25 April 2017 03:45:52 GMTPlus11

Who would have thought that Rajon Rondo would be the linchpin player in the first round match-up between the Boston Celtics and the Chicago Bulls?

With Rondo out for his second straight game, the Celtics cruised past the Bulls 104-95 on Sunday afternoon at the United Center in Chicago.

Down and out after losing the first two games at home, the Celtics have crawled back to tie up the series 2-2 before heading back to Boston and TD Garden for Wednesday's Game 5.

Leading the way for Boston was Isaiah Thomas, with the Eastern Conference All-Star starting to look like his normal self. Thomas finished the contest with a game high 33 points on 10-of-21 shooting, while dishing out seven assists and grabbing four rebounds.

The Bulls have been in a tailspin since Rondo went out with a thumb injury and have seen the momentum reversed in the series.

Boston has reclaimed home court in the series, although neither team so far has won a home game in the first round one vs eight match-up.

In defeat Jimmy Butler led the way for the Bulls, with the 27-year-old shooting guard going for a team high 33 points, while pulling down five rebounds and passing out nine assists on the afternoon.

Chicago was extremely thin at the point guard position before the injury to Rondo and is essentially throwing players into the mix to try and find a solution.

Former Murray State star Isaiah Canaan came off the bench to play 34 minutes on Sunday and curiously was the only Chicago player with a positive plus/minus.

The Celtics are now 1.083 to win the series, with the Bulls 8.50, while Boston are 1.64 to win the series 4-2.

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