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Are teams underestimating Rajon Rondo’s value?

Chuck - Red's Army December 7, 2011 Uncategorized 16 Comments

Rondo

In case you haven't noticed, Rajon Rondo's name has popped up lately in trade rumors for Chris Paul.

Considering Rondo's talent and his affordable contract (4 years, $44 million), I figured he'd be a hot commodity to any GM looking for a point guard. But New Orleans' Dell Demps is not impressed.

Rondo is not the best jump shooter. Not from the field or the foul line. Opposing players lay a mile off him. I understand that. But aside from Derrick Rose and Paul, is there a better penetrating point guard in the league? No. He's an electrifying passer. Critics will argue Rondo's assists are inflated because he plays with the Big 3. Yes, that's somewhat true. But the Celtics are a half-court team. Rondo is a fast-break point guard. Imagine how effective he'd be leading the break with some real horses on the wings.

Let's move to the other side of the ball. Rondo is the league's top defensive point guard. What's frightening is he can be better. All Celtics fans know that Rondo gambles too much. How many point guards rebound better than Rondo? Few, if any. Remember that 2008-09 playoff series vs the Bulls in which he nearly averaged a triple double?

Rondo also brings intangibles to the table. He can handle pressure in a big market. He's got three future HOFers barking in his ear all game. He's played in two NBA finals. He's played with a dislocated elbow.

Demps wants Stephen Curry. A deadly shooter with a tremendous upside. Is that all you got? He's not a two-way player. He's averaged 18 points playing on a Golden State team that's won 62 games over two seasons. Why on earth would Demps covet this kid over Rondo? Because of the offense? Same goes for the Clippers Eric Gordon.

Yes, I just wrote a blog touting the skills of Rajon Rondo – a guy I want the Celtics to trade. Rondo is all of those things, but I think the skills possessed by Chris Paul are better suited for this Celtics team. My point is that Rondo deserves more credit. Danny Ainge should not have to throw in the kitchen sink with any deal that includes his dynamic point guard.

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  • http://profile.typepad.com/sothewind Lee in Oregon

    I think he doesn’t get the credit he deserves because he’s surrounded by such great players, that and the fact that he simply can’t shoot.
    Gamble On, Danny…

  • http://profile.typepad.com/6p0115704263ce970b Papa Irish

    I wonder if Orlando views Rondo more favorably than New Orleans does, why not try to trade Rondo for Dwight, then sign baron davis for a year, and try to have dwight recruit CP3 rather than the other way around.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/stompininmyaf1 Thats What She

    This blog is exactly why I think we need to keep Rondo (and I LOVE Cp3!). The guy has so many positives to his game and to trade him and Jeff Green AND a pick away for CP3 for ONE YEAR!? To me that is just too much to gamble.
    Maybe CP3 gives us a better shot at the title this year but if he doesn’t sign we are in essentially the same position (Big retired?/rebuilding). But I strongly feel like Jeff Green is gonna be a great player and we need to be patient with him. He is a big guy who can stretch defenses tremendously. Also, trading a first round pick (which we are going to horribly need once the big 3 go) is not a great idea either.
    It just feels like we are trading in a Fully loaded Mercedes to get a bare bones Audi….
    Also, maybe I am too much of a Boston sports fan but IMO it is delusional to think that we are going to get Paul and Dwight so we really need to stop planning for that.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/celticfan822 Nick

    Curry and Gordon are very good offensive players. Much better shooters than Rondo. Thats it though, defense passing leadership championship pedigree toughness speed athletisicm. Rondo has a HUGE edge in all those areas over those 2 guys the Hornets want who are softer than baby shit. This is a bad idea. I’m very high on Rondo, Green, AND Avery as big parts of our future. This trade won’t happen and it shouldn’t happen. Let all these other clown try 2 build AAU best buddy teams. Lets do it our way and rebuild from within.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/brandonat1899 Rondo To KG

    Let’s hope that all of this CP3 excitement doesn’t make this site forget about Larry Legend’s birthday.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/jmeedu James Eisenman

    Here’s the thing. Rondo is a mediocre shooter and a horrible free throw shooter, you’re right. But your comments about his defense are just off the wall. He makes All Defense only because of his steals. He’s always cheating, so he’s always a step behind his man. The pick and roll routinely becomes the pick and splat with him. Or the pick and who’s ever guarding the pick man getting into foul trouble. He’s headstrong and stubborn. And his assist totals drop as teams start laying off him and playing the driving and passing lanes. I love and hate him. Why wouldn’t the sane GM’s?

  • http://profile.typepad.com/sondler Jerry Sondler

    I always knew he was ridiculously overrated by Boston fans…but, even I`m surprised to see the complete lack of respect he`s getting from GM`s throughout the league.
    He is downright toxic….totally radioactive!
    This goes beyond his lack of shooting skills…he`s clearly viewed as an aloof punk, with a severe attitude problem.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/6p011571d4119a970b Lex

    Rondo is a hell of a talent.
    On a nightly basis, he is a top ten player.
    In the playoffs?
    Maybe once a playoffs he is magic johnson.
    Otherwise?
    Just another good point guard that can’t get us over the hump.
    I know. I know.
    What about this game and that game?
    What about the fact that he was injured?
    Blah blah blah.
    I like the magic johnson comparison.
    Problem is come playoff time the comparison is less and less apt.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mannoperry Perry Manno

    I concur with this post, but our problems stem from a lack of offense (second half last yr:101.4 pts/100 possessions). Too many times we have watched this team’s FG% dip in the second half of the season. The facts are PP can longer be relied upon to solely create offense off the dribble and RR has not shown the consistency in knocking down 16-22ft shots. So late in games defenses will slack off him, pack in down low — forcing Ray and PP to hit jumpers and we know RR won’t drive it to the hole for fear getting fouled. This really hurts our P/R offense and puts so much pressure on KG (the screener). Quite simply the team is constructed for playoffs, but they lack the scoring punch needed to compete for a championship. The formula is pretty simple …
    1- Trade for CP3
    2- Sign Delonte, Quis and Powe for one year (all are defensive minded and know the system, which helps considering the short schedule, back to backs, and limited practices)
    3- Go after T. Price, Battier or a defensive minded swing man like Al Thorton or Anthony Parker if mini-MLE is what we have available. This might be moot if Ariza was included in the CP3 trade.
    4- Sign a legit defensive minded center .. perhaps Arron Gray or Fesenko
    5- Sign another scorer at the vet minimum … Roger Mason, Redd or Kapono
    CP3/Delonte/AB
    Ray/Mason or Parker
    Pierce/Quis/Thorton
    KG/Powe … either Davis or Green (whoever is not part of the trade)
    JO/Fesenko
    .. and Johnson and Moore

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mdsample greenbeand

    and when cp3 walks away after the season.. then waht? beside gin baker, name the last big name free agent celts signed.
    rondo is more than fine as a celtic

  • http://profile.typepad.com/vandelay28 Lakerhater

    Would love to see them get Fesenko but I don’t think he’s on Danny’s radar.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mannoperry Perry Manno

    I've given up trying to predict Danny's next move, but Fesenko has potential to be solid
     
    question is … do the Jazz commit more than 3m/ and is he worth the mini – mle to us?
     
    maybe if Ariza is bundled with CP3 or if JG stays in green :)
     

  • http://profile.typepad.com/paulmkane2001 Paulmkane2001

    Listen, if Rondo is as dynamic as you say, and he is, THEN YOU DON’T TRADE HIM, period.
    Most teams know that. So they think that Ainge is trying to unload damaged goods – that he is too much of a head case, that is elbow hasn’t recovered, or something.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/paulmkane2001 Paulmkane2001

    Oh for God’s sake, Rondo is NOT the problem with our offense. The problem is that we slow the ball down too much and never ever hit the offensive glass.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/paulmkane2001 Paulmkane2001

    Nice. Well said.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mannoperry Perry Manno

    Disagree and the numbers validate my point.
     
    Over the past two seasons points per possession have declined from 5th in 09'- 10' to 19th last year, and unless RR can develop a mid range game and space the floor PP remains the only consistent creator of points. I'm not advocating trading RR unless it's for Paul or D. Will. Or perhaps Gordon or Westbrook, but neither LAC or OKC seems willing to deal either player because of their cheap contracts.
    Let's face it … teams consistently allow him to shoot in the playoffs. His reluctance to shoot or not get fouled usually results in poor spacing, which leads to bad shots. If he can turn into a more fluid creator of points there would be no need to mention him in trades.