Red's Army

Eye on the Enemy: How they’ll guard Rondo

John - Red's Army (@RedsArmy_John) May 6, 2012 Uncategorized Comments Off

With the Boston Celtics trying to take control of their series with the Atlanta Hawks we'll be keeping a closer look on the Hawks to see what they're up to.

Rajon Rondo is the straw that stirs the Green Kool Aid.  If Rondo is on, then the C's are damn near impossible to beat.  If Rondo is off, then you're going to see some pretty bad basketball.  Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal Constitution took a closer look at every Rondo possession during his historic Game 3 triple double and came up with these four points for guarding Rondo.

  1. Hinrich should guard Rondo whenever possible, especially when this can be done without Teague having to check Allen.
  2. Pargo should not guard Rondo whenever possible.
  3. The player guarding Rondo should generally go under screens while being careful not to get tangled up with Garnett, who is a master at getting away with moving screens and hooks.
  4. Josh Smith by far is the best screen-roll defensive partner for whichever teammate is guarding Rondo. He makes going under screens more feasible because he can help and get back to Garnett. If Josh plays, perhaps he should guard KG down the stretch.

Going under screens is the norm for guarding Rondo.  Chasing Rondo over the top is suicide because he just pops it into 5th gear and he has his pick of the open man as everyone scrambles to recover.  Going under the screen is the best way to cut off the penetration and encourage a Rondo jumper.

I'm not sure Hinrich is going to be able to duplicate the Game 3 effort, though.  If your strategy is to have Hinrich guard Rondo and expect that to be effective, then I wish you good luck, because you'll need it. 

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