Garnett powers Celtics over Bulls

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, Last Updated: 10:17 AM ET

Boston - Kevin Garnett scored 20 points with 17 rebounds, and the Boston Celtics led by as many as 18 in a dominating 104-92 victory over the Chicago Bulls.

The Celtics extended their winning streak to six games Friday and moved to 9-1 this season at TD Garden, getting 18 points from Paul Pierce and 12 points and 19 assists from Rajon Rondo.

The overmatched Bulls were led by Derrick Rose's 20 points and 14 points and 10 rebounds from Joakim Noah.

Chicago never held a lead, losing for the fifth time in eight games.

Ray Allen scored 10 of his 14 points in the first quarter and Boston poured it on early, taking a 14-point lead when Allen's layup made it 26-12. The Celtics shot 62 percent in the frame, carrying a 31-19 lead into the second.

Chicago head coach Tom Thibodeau said his team has taken a step back defensively.

"Playing from behind. Dug a big hole. Against quality opponents you can't do that," said Thibodeau, who fell to 0-2 against his former team.

Things improved for the Bulls. They opened the second quarter with a 15-3 run, tying the game at 34 on Luol Deng's free throw with 7:45 remaining in the half.

But Deng missed his second foul shot, blowing a chance to give Chicago its first lead. The Bulls also missed an opportunity to go ahead when Noah was unable to complete a three-point play about a minute later.

The game was tied for a third time in the second quarter when Carlos Boozer made both of his free throws with 2:44 left, but Garnett hit a turnaround jumper at the other end and Boston remained in front all the way to a 53-48 lead at intermission.

Celtics head coach Doc Rivers blamed himself for letting the Bulls back in the game.

"I messed the rotations out. The bench lost the lead for us," Rivers said. "You think about it: we didn't do anything different than we did in the first quarter. We played unbelievable the first eight minutes of the game, and then we got a sub and our bench gave up that lead."

But Chicago never tied the game again.

The Celtics, behind eight points from Rondo, opened the second half with a 17-6 run and vaulted to a 16-point lead midway through the third quarter. The lead reached as high as 17 on a Rondo jumper and was 82-67 heading into the fourth.

Boston had three 18-point leads in the last quarter, the final one coming when Pierce's free throws made it 102-84 with 2:07 left.

Game Notes

Thibodeau was hired in the offseason after spending the previous three years as the lead assistant to Rivers...Boozer scored 12 points in his second game with Chicago. He made his season debut in Wednesday's loss to Orlando after being signed as a free agent in the off-season and missing the team's first 15 games due to a broken right hand. Asked if his hand was feeling better, Boozer said: "It's closer."


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