Lakers vs. Celtics Game 5: Rajon Rondo’s Shove Pushes L.A. in 3-2 Hole

When Rajon Rondo shoved Ron Artest with 4:41 remaining in the second quarter of the Celtics’ 92-86 Game Five victory on Sunday, it triggered a role reversal that played out for the rest of the night.

With less than five minutes remaining in the quarter, Rondo attacked the Lakers on a fast break, setting up Boston center Kendrick Perkins who later dished off to a cutting Kevin Garnett.

Garnett was then shoved to the ground by Artest on a hard foul, prompting Rondo to push Artest in retaliation after the whistle was blown.

Rondo received a technical foul for his exploits but his team received a shot in the arm for his courage.

With his team leading 34-31 in the second period, here’s Rondo—the second smallest member of the Celtics’ rotation—shoving Artest—arguably the Lakers’ best defender and most physical player—to the side like he’s two inches shorter than him.

Rondo’s push, followed by a profanity-laced reprimand of Artest, showed the Celtics’ heart and passion, and was just one of a series of plays that helped to mentally subdue two of the Lakers’ most important players for another contest.

Highlighted by 6'4" reserve guard Tony Allen’s block on Laker seven-footer Pau Gasol in bottom of the third quarter, the Celtics out-muscled and out-played the Lakers for a second consecutive game.

Gasol, who had 23 points and 14 rebounds in Game One went on record record to say “Garnett has lost a step,” was stuffed three times in the period.

One by Allen that left him on the floor and two others by Garnett, the same player who had “lost a step.” 

In fact, Garnett has actually gained a few steps over the past few contests, averaging 19.6 points per game in the last three outings.

Light years more effective than the 11 points per game Garnett struggled to...

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