|Posted by shawn cassidy on April 21, 2013 at 12:40 AM|
For Rondo fans missing him this time of year is an understatement. For Celtic fans period missing Rondo is an understatement. Rondo became the great player he is today by being a big time player when the games mattered most. Watching the Celtics turn the ball over 20 times Saturday was clearly a moment of oh sh%t we need Rondo.
"It's great to have him around. Everybody smiled, hugged him this morning, surprised he was here," said Avery Bradley. "We're so happy to see him. He's our leader and to have him here just makes me feel even more relaxed out there."
"He's still our leader. I know he'll be on the bench, coaching just like
Doc," said Bradley. "So he's going to be big being here. His presence
is going to be big for us."
Did the team miss him?
"Definitely. Not having him in the gym. When he came, we were so happy to see him," said Bradley. "Every time he comes we're happy to see him. We're like a family. Somebody's gone for a week and they come back, it's like, 'Yeah, finally, you're back!' So, that's what kind of feeling it is. I'm just happy he's doing well."
Bradley had some choice words for Rondo when the Celtics were struggling during their 6 game losing streak in January. But it's clear that Rondo has Bradley's ear. That's big for the Celtics going forward. Bradley hasn't had a easy time as of late playing the point guard position. Jeff Van Gundy said the player missing Rondo the most is Avery, and it's probably true.
"He probably coaches as much as anybody. And I don’t know if it helps,
but I think it does," said Rivers. "I actually don’t know; as a player
you tend to listen to the players in the uniform over the suits and
ties. I feel that way as a coach all the time. So we’ll see. But I know,
it was great today in shootaround, he knew every set the Knicks were
running. Every time we called out a set to walk through it, he was
pointing where everybody [would be]. I mean, it’s amazing. He’s always
been that way. I was surprised today because he’s not playing. And yet
he studied the book. There’s gotta be some good value in that."
Asked if Rondo was like adding another coach, Rivers quipped, "He’s always been on another level that way. I always tell him that, if he wasn’t so crazy, he’d be a great coach."
I've said it before recently when Rondo has been with the team, but with him there, and in the mix with his team. It's a great learning experience for him in a time of rehabbing. I feel like a kid counting down the days until Christmas. Waiting for Rondo is tough,and harder to take when the Celtics need him.