|Irish Coffee: Rajon Rondo rumors, fact and fiction||11.30.11 at 9:14 am ET|
FACT: The Celtics are discussing Rajon Rondo in a trade for Hornets point guard Chris Paul.
When rumors started flying that team president Danny Ainge has included Rondo in trade discussions, there was always only one player who could possibly be on the other end of that conversation: Chris Paul.
With nobody to take over the reins in Rondo’s absence, the Celtics would have to land another point guard in return for the two-time All-Star. And considering the attractiveness of Rondo’s contract (4 years, $44 million remaining), that floor general would have to be decidedly better than Rajon Rondo.
In my mind, that list includes two names: Derrick Rose and Paul. There is no way in hell the Bulls are trading the reigning NBA MVP, so that leaves Paul, whose impending free agency puts him on the bargaining table.
Sports Illustrated’s Sam Amick confirmed that notion on Tuesday, citing numerous sources in claiming Ainge “is highly motivated” to land the 2005-06 NBA Rookie of the Year. Colleague Paul Flannery explained why the exchange makes painstaking sense but may require a third team to get done. And Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski reported the C’s have made calls to the Pacers for just that reason.
The 26-year-old Paul has averaged 18.7 points (47.1 FG%, 35.9 3P%, 85.3 FT%), 9.9 assists and 2.4 steals in six NBA seasons, decidedly better numbers than the 25-year-old Rondo (10.7 points, 48.6 FG%, 24.2 3P%, 62.2 FT%, 7.6 assists, 1.9 steals) on a decidedly worse team.
While Rondo is one of the five best point guards in the NBA, Paul is one of the five best players in the league. That’s why Ainge is exploring the trade. And if it falls through, as ESPN.com’s Ric Bucher suggested it would, there’s nobody more stubborn than Rondo to prove Ainge, me and everybody else wrong.
FICTION: The Celtics offered Rajon Rondo and Jeff Green in a trade for Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook and center Kendrick Perkins. Read the rest of this entry »
|Irish Coffee: Celtics Rumors 911 (Episode 2)||11.29.11 at 11:28 am ET|
It’s Episode 2 of a show we’ll call “Rumors 911″ from here on out, as the water cooler boils over with scuttlebutt (Ok, that doesn’t sound right …) and nobody’s name is off limits in Boston — if only because Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge likes it that way.
Today’s Celtics-related topics of conversation: Mavericks free agent center Tyson Chandler (yes please!), Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo (God no!) and Knicks free agent guard Roger Mason Jr. (so what!).
First, the longshot: Discussing high-profile free agents on NBA TV, NBA.com’s David Aldridge rather calmly slipped in this gem: “Boston is a team that has very few players under contract right now and desperately needs a center. They’re looking very hard at Tyson Chandler” (h/t Red’s Army).
The first two parts of that comment are entirely true, considering Jermaine O’Neal is the lone center on a C’s roster with just six players under contract enter the Dec. 9 free agency period. The latter portion of Aldridge’s statement are curious, if only for the obvious question: How?
- Option No. 1: A sign-and-trade deal with the Mavericks involving Chandler and Glen Davis. Of course, Mark Cuban would probably have to assume Jermaine O’Neal‘s $6.2 million expiring contract, Ainge would likely have to sweeten the deal with Avery Bradley and that still might not be the best offer Dallas receives.
|VOTE: Rondo or CP3?||07.22.10 at 3:48 pm ET|
With Chris Paul reportedly wanting out in New Orleans, the airwaves have been burning with debate over whether the point guard could potentially be a fit in Boston and whether it would be worth replacing incumbent Rajon Rondo. Now we ask you for your opinion.
|LeBron makes surprise appearance at camp||07.06.10 at 8:47 am ET|
LeBron James showed up at his Nike Skills Academy on Monday, a day earlier than expected, and took part in a late-afternoon workout as the league awaits a decision on where he will play next season. James was not expected until Tuesday at the camp, which features some of the nation’s top college and high school players working out in James’ hometown of Akron, Ohio.
Hornets star Chris Paul looked on as James ran drills and played 5-on-5 games for two hours. Before leaving the gym, James declined comment to a reporter.
James is not expected to announce his plans until after the conclusion of the camp Wednesday. Thursday is the first day teams can officially sign free agents.
|Rondo helping Hudson improve defense||11.21.09 at 3:33 pm ET|
The two point guards were in the midst of an intense post-practice drill and neither wanted to stop. Rondo drove, pulled up for shots, and tried to shake Hudson on the way to the basket. Hudson buckled down and tried to stay one step ahead of him.
“I just play defense and he’s on offense the whole time,” Hudson explained.
The drill, while competitive, was friendly in nature — “Me and Lester are pretty close. I like Les,” said Rondo. They decided some extra practice time would help Hudson improve on defense and Rondo was happy to help him out.
“[I've learned] you’ve got to be ready,” said Hudson. “There are multiple pick-and-rolls in practice. Just he’s very quick so he’s going to help me out guarding quicker guards in the NBA, so hopefully I can get my defense right.”
Rondo participated in similar drills as a rookie against Sebastian Telfair and Delonte West and knows the benefits of additional time on the court. It is especially valuable for Hudson, who has clocked just 37 minutes so far in his first season.
“He can play D, he’s long, he’s athletic, he’s quick,” Rondo said of Hudson. “He’s going to be a great player in the league one day. He’s young, he’s just trying to learn the way and try to find his way on the team.”
Hudson also learned about Rondo’s game as well. Rondo is shooting 55.9% from the field this season, the second best percentage among all guards behind Chris Paul, but his offense has been criticized in the past.
“He can shoot better than I thought he could. He’s very quick, so it helps me on my defense. I’m trying to get my defense up,” Hudson said. “He can shoot from the three. In one-on-ones he’s been hitting, so I think he can shoot it. He just has to shoot the ball.”
Neither player keeps score in this drill. It just comes down to shots and stops.
Said Hudson, “We just go til we say we’re done.”
|Rondo on Hornets: ‘It was intense’||11.01.09 at 10:31 pm ET|
Sunday’s postgame access to Rajon Rondo came with a condition to reporters: No questions about Chris Paul.
After Rondo and Paul traded verbal barbs and even a double-technical midway through the second quarter, the two star point guards of the Celtics and Hornets got into it even more at the end of the fourth, with both teams needing to be separated.
“It was very intense,” Rondo said. “I think it was our first close game. I think we handled it well. We didn’t play extremely well tonight but when they made their run, we got stops and then we scored offensively.”
Ray Allen played next to Rondo all night and he liked what he saw from the intense tete-a-tete between Rondo and CP 3.
“Yeah, they’re both feisty,” Allen said. “Both aggressive, in your face. They take the ball to the hole. Put you on your heels all game long. So I’m pretty sure it can get pretty chippy out there.”
And Allen didn’t mind seeing that, as long as the teams left the hard feelings on the court and controlled each other coming off, which was a bit of a challenge following Boston’s 97-87 win.
“Walk off the floor and say, ‘Way to compete tonight,’” Allen said. “For those 48 minutes, I cannot stand you. I wanted to fight you. I wanted to do everything I possibly could. And when you walk off the floor you say, ‘Way to battle.’”
To hear what Chris Paul had to say for himself, click here.
|Turn up the volume: Rondo speaks out||at 8:54 pm ET|
Everyone wanted to hear from Rajon Rondo before Sunday’s game.
The NBA had extended their deadline to Monday evening for signing players before they can become restricted free agents at the end of the season and Rondo falls into that category.
No deal was announced but Rondo told reporters he’s not worried about the business aspect of his career. Smart move since he was getting ready to face Chris Paul and the Hornets.
Here’s what he had to say before the game.
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