|Posted by shawn cassidy on January 18, 2014 at 2:45 AM|
This wasn't a typical Lakers vs Celtics tilt, or at least not like prior games in recent memory. The rivalry was renewed in 2008, and by all means the rivalry has taken a different road this season. The Lakers and Celtics are not contending right now, and both teams are rebuilding in their own ways. The game tonight didn't have that special feel to it when it came to the rivalary. Of course I wanted to beat them, and I just wanted a win period. The Celtics lost Friday night, 107-104 to the Lakers, who currently sit near the bottom in the West.
The game Friday night was special, but not because of the rivalry, it felt like a normal game, and I think it's for the fact that Rondo was returning. Our minds were on his every move, and his every pass, and we wanted to walk away from this game knowing that Rondo was okay. When the final buzzer went off, I think for some of us we were upset, but that feeling quickly faded. The new era got under way Friday against the Lakers. The Celtics finally announced that Rondo was the 15th captain in franchise history.
The second quarter was magical for Rondo. It felt like he never left, it was an outer body experience, spiritual, and even religious in terms of the basketball gods. The shots that he made had a certain pop, flare, and art that has been missing. His performance in the amount of time that he put in was wonderful. Rondo finished with eight points on 4-of-7 shooting with four assists, two rebounds and two steals. That's more then I hoped for, and to be honest. Rondo should have easily had 10 assists with the passes he set up for his teammates.
“He’s going to be able to get back into the flow of things quicker than most, because he’s not taking time to adjust mentally,” said Stevens. “He’s been studying the game like he’s been out there for the last 40 games instead of just sitting there and doing what a lot of hurt guys do – and that’s not pay as much attention.”
Rondo has been into everything since day one. He's been on the bench, at practices, coaching on the bench along with Stevens. Rondo's agenda is simple. He wants to win championships, and he wants to be regarded as the best in the game. Will he achieve all of that, maybe not the best player in the league, but I'll say best point guard. I also think Rondo has the ability to lead this team, with some help of course, and the end result should be another championship.
Stevens expressed why he named Rondo captain, and it's credit that Rondo deserves, and it's about damn time.
“I think it’s something you earn through your effort, through your leadership, through your involvement in the community, and all of those things,” Stevens said. “He’s earned his captaincy.”
This is his time to shine, we won tonight because the Celtics franchise has their new leader out there finally. I believe the new era was kicked off tonight, and the final product isn't out there. But it's the start of something big, I don't know what it is yet, and nobody does. It's the Celtics, and winning and pride seems to be everything. Rondo has figured it out, but their are lessons still to be learned. He's already learned many lessons, and I think he's smart enough to figure the rest out. He's the captain, and it's the crown that he's earned.
“It’s not a big deal,” Rondo said of the increased leadership role. “I’ve been point guard for this team since I’ve been here. I’ve pretty much considered myself the captain or one of the leaders. It’s always been four or five voices, including Doc (Rivers) in the past, but I take full responsibility of what happens here as far as the team goes. As I said, this is nothing new, I was pretty much a born leader and accept the role fully on my own.”
Words said by the new leader, or at least sole leader of the Boston Celtics. The Big Three, and Doc Rivers show has moved on. The main attraction is Rajon Rondo, and he's taking full responsibility for the show.