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Rondo a new man after a year away

Posted by shawn cassidy on January 15, 2014 at 12:30 AM

Hello old friend, how has it been? We've missed you around here. A lot has changed since the last time you played a NBA game. You've changed, you seem to be free, more at ease with yourself. You've become the leader of this team, and you haven't even played a second with this team yet, at least in real game action. Rondo has mastered the art of being an unselfish player, and teammate. Rondo is clearly the leader of this team.

A quality that is found in few, but Rondo is confident, and he's grown in leaps and bounds. His injury was a blessing in disguise. Rondo has grown up through this ordeal, and he's ready for the next stage of his career. The Celtics won't be contenders when he returns, they'll be a playoff contender. Rondo's growth will be put to the test when he steps on the floor. It won't happen in the first game, but maybe a few games in will see Rondo's impact with this team. 

Rondo was painted as the super villain for years. Nobody could take away Rondo's gift. His ability to win with what he had, and his ability to use art and basketball as an outlet. I have been pro Rondo since I started this site, and he slowly became one of my favorite players. I think what brings me to like Rondo is that he's an underdog and he's picked apart by so many. It's also great that he has a special gift for the game.

I do ask for Rondo to take it easy, don't try to do so much that you put yourself at risk. Rondo hates losing, and I hope he stays away from giving up too much of his body. Rondo will certainly  be an immediate help for the crumbling Celtics, losers of nine straight and 12 of 13, even as he shakes the rust from a yearlong absence. Rondo has been on many superstar's wish lists. Kobe, Melo want Rondo, and Rondo's teammates now want him.

ESPN Boston

"He's a special basketball player to get mentally prepared for," said Sullinger, who later added, "It kind of blew my mind because I didn't think he was going to pass it to me. … It was just kind of shocking that he threw it to me the way he did."

"To go in every game and try to create for yourself, it gets tough," Crawford said of his recent slump while running the first-team offense. "To get easier shots, that's definitely going to help me and help the team. I'm excited to play with him. … It's good to have another playmaker on the floor; he makes it easy on everybody."

Crawford and Rondo actually intersected many moons ago. Crawford's older brother, Joe, was a college teammate of Rondo at Kentucky and came out in the same recruiting class. Crawford said he's been watching Rondo for a long time and is eager to share the floor with him.

"It was good to show what I could do for the time that I got [as a starter], but I just want to stay consistent and, Rondo coming back, it's a big player that we need," Crawford said. "We need the wisdom that he's got, the leadership."

I will go on the record and say the Celtics will have a winning record from the point when Rondo returns, and until the last game of the regular season. The Celtics prior to this season owned the top spot, or close to the top spot in assists, this season they were dead last. Recently they've climbed out of that spot, but they still sit at 27th in the leauge. Rondo was near the top in minutes played, and honestly I don't see him playing more than 35 minutes a night. The Celtics have people who can back Rondo up for the first time in a long time.

Welcome back, the room was dark and gloomy since you left. If you do return Friday, it will be a day that I won't forget.

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Reply Morena
2:36 AM on January 15, 2014 
Well said Shawn.
He's the one able to turn on the light in the room.
It's been so long I almost can't believe it, but I'm so happy!!
Reply Greg
11:16 AM on January 15, 2014 
agree well said
Reply paul
12:28 PM on January 15, 2014 
Good piece. Rondo does seem changed. He seems much lighter in spirit. We'll see how that translates once Rondo is on the floor, but I think it's no mirage. But remember, we need to see him dig in more on D, and we need to see him push the pace more on O.