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Welcome to the Garden ...

Posted by Gary Dzen, Boston.com Staff  January 31, 2010 01:00 PM

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Welcome to the Garden, where the Boston Celtics (29-15) will take on the Los Angeles Lakers (36-11) at 3:30 p.m.

Pleasantly surprised to see the big-game atmosphere outside the Garden this morning. “Beat LA” signs are being handed out, and fans are taking turns holding up the signs and posing for pictures. Scalpers are already asking for tickets they’ll no doubt turn around and sell for 50 percent more in an hour.

Despite Boston’s failed road trip, this game has meaning to Celtics fans. They want this one.

There's a crush of media here today, relegating yours truly to the halo. Last time I was in the halo the Lakers were in town. For the Finals.

Paul Pierce just walked past on his way to the floor for a closed team walkthrough. The Celtics seemingly have a lot to go over following losses in Orlando and Atlanta, but coming home, they’ll no doubt dictate the company line that this afternoon’s game is unique, a game in itself. A win today and a lot of questions are answered.

Back in a bit with more updates.

UPDATE, 1:46 p.m.: Rajon Rondo is getting up some shots, sans iPod. He usually likes to shoot with his headphones in, but the house music will apparently suffice today. Lakers players just arrived at the arena.

One other note: ESPN/ABC have that fancy remote-control camera dangling from wires hooked to the Garden rafters. Should make for some interesting shots of the game.

You can also follow along on Twitter: @GlobeGaryDzen, @GlobeCeltics.

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