No rest, no problem

DALLAS -- Considering how poorly the Celtics played while stumbling into the All-Star break, some wondered if Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett -- both clearly still recovering from injuries that sidelined them since the new year began -- should even make the trip to Dallas after being voted to participate in the All-Star festivities.

It seemed the pair might be better served to simply shut it down for those four days and hope the rest translated to better play when the Celtics open the second half of the season and a four-game road trip Tuesday night in Sacramento.

This weekend, it turns out, might have been just what the doctor ordered.

Pierce and Garnett, along with first-time All-Star Rajon Rondo, have rarely been spotted without a smile in Dallas. Despite a frenetic schedule of practices, appearances, photo shoots, and media responsibilities, the trio have embraced it all and reveled in the simple camaraderie built spending the NBA's marquee weekend together.

The three players have seemingly been joined at the hip. Shooting together on the court during practice, or sitting next to each other at media availability. Even when Pierce competed in the 3-point Shootout Saturday night, Rondo and Garnett were front (row) and center to support him.

"All this -- with the fans, my friends and family, and my teammates -- you can't ask for anything more," said Garnett, smiling widely as he soaked in the raucous atmosphere after the Eastern Conference All-Stars practiced before a packed house at the Jam Session Center Court at the Dallas Convention Center Saturday morning.

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