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Celtics Morning Joe: The Captain is?

Posted by shawn cassidy on July 30, 2013 at 5:00 AM

ESPN's Chris Forsberg posted an article on Rondo taking the captains hat. Here's some bits from his article.


Around the league, players typically get their invisible C for two reasons: They've been around the longest and/or offer leadership qualities. The first part is a slam dunk for Rondo as he's easily Boston's longest-tenured player (seven seasons; Avery Bradley is next closest at three). During that time, Rondo has hoisted the Larry O'Brien Trophy, but also endured the rigors of the Celtics' last rebuilding process during his rookie season.

The second half of the equation is slightly more roily, but indications are that Rondo has quietly ascended to a leadership post over the last three seasons (he simply had a veteran safety net). Even at age 27, Rondo has the ear of his teammates, particularly the remaining young core, and even Pierce and Kevin Garnett suggested in recent seasons that the figurative torch had been passed.

His teammates verified this last year, often stressing his behind-the-scenes leadership, whether it was a phone call to check in on Bradley in the D-League a couple of years back, or packing Capri Suns and Teddy Grahams for last year's preseason trip to Turkey, much of what makes Rondo a leader isn't always in plain sight.

But here's the real question: What kind of captain will he be?

You see, getting the C isn't the hard part in Boston. It's how long you maintain that post that dictates your legacy as a leader. Will Rondo be part of the longevity club, captains who served in that role for more than a decade and don't need their first name to be referenced in these parts like Cousy (1950-63), Bird (1980-92) and Pierce (2000-13)? Or will the captain's crest bounce around as it did in the '90s, when, after Bird capped his 13-year run in 1992, eight different players -- more than half the total that have worn it since 1950 -- were named captain of Boston teams that were trapped in the rebuilding process?

Irrespective of his captaincy, this is a monster season for Rondo. The fact that he's rehabbing from ACL surgery in February complicates matters a bit, but Rondo needs to show this season -- on the court and off -- that he's indeed the franchise cornerstone that Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has suggested he is. That would allow the Celtics to build around Rondo moving forward, making him the foundation upon which the next iteration of an overhauled Boston squad would be built.

On the night the Celtics formalized the trade that sent Pierce and Garnett to Brooklyn, Ainge said he views Rondo as someone the team can build around and has stressed since that he has no intention of trading him this offseason.

I think we have covered this topic more than a few times on this site. I'll keep it short and sweet. First of all I believe in Rondo's ability to lead, and to win with Boston. Will it be easy in year one? No way, that's not apart of the plan, but we must also see something from Stevens and Rondo in the first season as coach and player. When it comes to Ainge, he's had a checkered past.  You can call me crazy, but I believe Danny wants to win with Rondo, but that's not to say he won't change his mind next season when Rondo's on his final year of his contract. Rondo's reputation has been  tainted by many NBA experts. I think they have under sold Rondo when you want to compare him to other great point guards.But that's another story.

If Rondo isn't motivated by the hate, and by everything else that he's been labeled. Then maybe we do have the wrong guy. But it's fair to say Rondo wants to show everyone that he is the best point guard in the game pound for pound. I will reflect back to a post I wrote, and one from Paul. 

Celtics Morning Joe: Masters of the mind

An open mind is thoughtful, and it observes but does not judge. An open mind doesn’t draw conclusions, if the slightest doubt remains.If you keep an open mind you can hear a new idea forming, and it can be apart of some great results. If your theories don’t hold up, you will seek to understand the truth. Your wisdom will expand when you find a solution.Rajon Rondo will have to communicate and learn from a new coach.

The same goes for Brad Stevens. Both men will have to adjust to new and uncharted aspects of their careers. Brad will coach his first NBA team, and Rondo will be coached by someone other then Doc Rivers. They will have to become collaborators like Lennon and McCartney. Let's not hope for the later years version when wives and ego became more apart of their relationship. Even though their greatest music happened during the final years of the Beatles. Let's hope for the early days when sleeping in the same hotel room was fun, and to pass the time they worked on their craft.

gary washburn @GwashNBAGlobe 

Source close to Rajon Rondo says #celtics PG is looking at Stevens hire with "completely open mind."

In the classroom of life.There are teachers everywhere. While open minded students, strive to learn, and be aware of new ways. Rondo must adopt, and adapt to new things. The same will have to be said of Stevens. This is a players league, unlike the college game where it's more coach driven. Everyone seems to believe in Stevens, and as you saw yesterday. I have become more 'open minded' about the idea. 

So they need to both look into a mirror, and reflect on what they see. The question is are they both only  teachers? Or are they both students? The question is both. Both need to forge on together, and both parties need to keep an open mind, and it seems Ainge did by taking a chance on Brad Stevens.

This statement was from Paul on a recent Rondo report.

Rondo Report: A New Era?

"I'm increasingly convinced that Danny Ainge saw the same thing last year that many of us saw, I believe:  that, as much as Rondo failed to step up (especially defensively) into the leadership role, he was also blocked by the presence of the remaining Big Three guys, particularly Pierce (now allied to Jason Terry) from being able to fully embrace the leadership role.  Did Rondo fail or was he blocked?  It seems to have been a bit of both.  Doc seemed almost relieved, I think, when Rondo finally went down to injury, and Doc could just ride the Big Two the rest of the way.  No more unsettling tension between the Young Gun and the Old Gun.  Just Guts and Glory and True Grit.  One last shootout at the NBA Corral.  How embarrassing for Doc, and for the Old Uns, when it turned out that sans Rondo they were shooting blanks."

Rondo has been given a golden opportunity with a fresh start. He will take over as team captain, and he will be the face of the most storied franchise. I believe in him, and I think it's now or never. I do fear that the once sure bet that Stevens and Rondo would build something strong, could be in jeopardy a bit with all of these young coaches. At this point everything has a hint of speculation, and in time the games and team will speak the truth.

Categories: Celtics Morning Joe

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Reply rcraig617
11:40 AM on July 30, 2013 
I believe rondo has been leading for a couple of years he just hasn't had the title. Even on the floor rondo is calling the plays and dictating where the ball goes most of the time and as you stated he's checked in on guys like bradley when he was in the d-league and wilcox and green when they had heart surgery. People that have been clamoring for rondo to be a leader just haven't realized he's been leading the one thing rondo needs to do though is lead by example on the defensive end which he didn't do last season.
Reply C'slife
4:14 PM on July 30, 2013 
Rondo needs to get back to what he does best. He doesn't need to worry about Pierce or KG anymore behind him. It's his call now. I hope he gets the chance to be himself.
Reply paul
6:22 PM on July 30, 2013 
I think there was a lot of dissent before because even though Rondo was the obvious leader, certain future HOFers were far from ready to fade back. I find it quite infuriating that folks like Pierce and Allen have gone to other teams and have SUDDENLY been perfectly willing take subsidiary roles. Of course, none of the 'journalists' have brought this point out. None of them have asked obvious questions this raises. Isn't it obvious that Pierce should have begun to take a back seat before? That Allen should have? THAT THEY WERE NOT WILLING TO, even though their abilities were starting to fade? Pierce and KG should have gone to Doc three years ago and asked him to make Rondo a co-captain. Pierce should have begun to defer to Rondo the way KG did, and so on. Yet it is Rondo that is still being blamed for any problems. And now everyone is demanding that Rondo suddenly be a perfect leader.

I think you said the best thing, rcraig - Rondo needs to lead by example, first and foremost, and on the defensive end first and foremost.
Reply paul
6:35 PM on July 30, 2013 
Of the Big Three and Doc, the only one who has not really embarrassed himself through this whole mess is KG. Doc, Ray and PP have all made it pretty clear that they simply could not see the amazing talent that was unfolding before their eyes, and the fact that Doc and PP occasionally made admiring statements about Rondo is not necessarily significant, except perhaps as an indication thta they knew a transition had to happen. They just didn't know how to make it happen, or they couldn't bring themselves to care, or whatever. Allen, I believe, actively undermined Rondo at times, as if the two were in an endlessly involving snit contest. Pierce had chance after chance to start to rebuild his game around Rondo, but instead - as we saw again and again - he seemed to come to life when Rondo was gone for some reason. And Doc? I believe it became too easy for Doc to take the credit while the Big Four did the work. With that much talent, how could you not be good, guys who practically ran the team by themselves! We saw last year what Doc had to offer when the team really relied on him to develop a plan and prepare the team. Not much. Then as soon as he got word that he might be asked to rebuild the team around Rondo he lit out for another sweet situation, and while he was at it, he may have ruined the Cs best chance to pick up a running mate for Rondo like Smith, by traitorously making sure (it seems) that the Cs didn't get Bledsoe (trade bait) out of the deal that sent him to the Clippers.

I just hope Rondo shows next year what he can do when he is FINALLY given the reins. But right now he and Stevens need to get together, and I'd like to see Rondo make some kind of public admission that he should have been a better leader last year, especially on defense.
Reply paul
6:36 PM on July 30, 2013 
If Rondo plays his heart out on the defensive end this year, assuming he is in good health, this team will follow him anywhere. And we do have talent.