Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
“We are different without him,” Ainge explained. “We’re running better now because five guys are running. Honestly, I think we rely on Rondo too much.
“For example: With Rondo out, you see Jeff Green grab a rebound and push it up the court himself. If he gets a rebound when Rondo is playing, he just gives it to him.
“That’s not Rondo’s fault. It’s only because he’s a great player and guys see him in that role.”
So how can Rondo rectify that when he returns next season?
“So, when Jeff Green gets the rebound,” Ainge replied, “Rondo has to take off down the court in that situation. Then Jeff can take two dribbles and hit Rondo. Now you see Rondo attack the basket in the open court. He is unguardable in those situations.”
A fairly simple explanation for the Celtics change in style of play over the 6 game winning streak. While it’s convenient (and lazy) to “blame” Rondo’s style and attitude for the team’s mediocre start, it’s not accurate. Yes, I’m still beating this drum. Maybe, just maybe, Ainge’s rational, intelligent explanation will resonate with some fans.
For those who want to fast-forward past the remainder of this season and speculate on whether the team can play this freely with Rondo:
He’s not one of those guys who reads a lot,” Ainge said. “I do think he sees the team winning and playing really well. Rondo is a terrific talent. So the question is, ‘Is Rondo doing this, or are we allowing Rondo to do this?’ Are we as players, as coaches, as management, relying on him too much?”
I don’t want to waste another second speculating about next season’s team chemistry.
While Rondo might not be listening to all the criticism, his agent hears it:
“I don’t really have a reaction to that,” said Bill Duffy. “But if those people think they can win a championship without him, I think that’s shortsighted.
“I mean, this is the regular season. This guy’s a playoffs superstar. So I think you can take a lot of what happens in the regular season with a grain of salt.”
Playoff superstar. Doubters with a short memory might want to watch this.
The rest of the links:
Globe – Celtics sharing the workload | CSNNE – Trust equaling wins for Celtics | ESPN Boston – Melo assigned to D league | Terry diary: KG, Lakers, C’s evolving O | Let’s stay together | NY Post – Nutty KG fan follows Anthony