Rajon Rondo elects to set up his teammates for scoring chances instead of himself. It's providing the Boston Celtics with another strong start.
The All-Star point guard seeks an encore for a near-flawless performance when the Celtics host the sputtering Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night.
Through four games, Rondo is averaging 16.8 assists and has an assist-to-turnover ratio of better than 4 to 1.
"He just knows the game, knows the spots and knows how to get guys the ball and where to get them," Paul Pierce told the Celtics' official website. "He is just being a great floor general out there."
Rondo was superb in a 109-86 win over Detroit on Tuesday, finishing with 17 assists and no turnovers while scoring nine points with four steals. That effort came after he put up a triple-double with a career-high 24 assists, 10 points and 10 rebounds in a 105-101 win over New York on Friday.
"He's unbelievable. He played the perfect floor game," Pierce said after scoring 21 points Tuesday night. "He had 17 assists and no turnovers. You can't get any better than that."
An eight-time All-Star, Pierce needs 23 points to become to the 36th player in league history to reach the 20,000 mark.
Pierce and Rondo have the Celtics (3-1) off to another hot start. They're 45-9 during the first two months of the four seasons.
Rondo could be in for another big night against the Bucks (1-3). He averaged 16.8 points and 11.0 assists as the teams split four meetings last season.
It's unclear if Boston will have Shaquille O'Neal available after he missed Tuesday's victory due to bruising in his right knee suffered against the Knicks. The veteran center is averaging 8.7 points and 5.3 rebounds.
Milwaukee is thus far struggling to replicate its success from last season, when it finished second in the Central Division at 46-36 to reach the playoffs.
The Bucks hope to contend for a division title in 2010-11, but coach Scott Skiles is worried about their intensity after they shot 37.5 percent in a 90-76 loss to Portland on Tuesday.
"It's nowhere near where it needs to be," Skiles said. "We still have guys who don't know what we're trying to do and our approach isn't where it needs to be, we keep easing into these games."
The Bucks could use some consistency from Brandon Jennings. The point guard made 2 of 7 shots and finished with eight points Tuesday after getting his first career triple-double with 20 points, 10 assists and 10 boards in Saturday's 98-88 win over Charlotte.
Jennings was a revelation for Milwaukee as a rookie last season, averaging 15.5 points and 8.5 assists per game after playing a year in Italy.
Andrew Bogut, who had 12 points and nine rebounds Tuesday, will look to continue his success against the Celtics. The center totaled 50 points and 31 rebounds in two meetings last season, missing the other two due to injury.