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Your Morning Dump…Where Ron Adams tweaked Rondo’s shot mechanics


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

Ron Adams remembers how opposing teams defended Rajon Rondo. Adams saw it when he was an assistant coach with the Bulls and elsewhere.

Then Adams joined the Celtics as an assistant, began working with Rondo this season, and now, Rondo has improved his shot, especially from 3-point range.

In fact, heading into Wednesday night’s game against Golden State, Rondo is shooting a career-best 36 percent from beyond the arc. And with his next 3-pointer, he’ll tie his career-high for makes in a season (17 in 2009-10).

“I gotta give Ron Adams a lot of credit,” Rondo said recently. “He’s been with me since Day 1.’’

Adams said Rondo deserved the bulk of the credit, but their work together began with a simple notion.

“One of the things we talked about was knowing when you’re open and shooting the ball,” Adams said. “That’s a fundamental change for him in some ways.”

They also examined every aspect of Rondo’s shooting motion.

“You start with the feet,” Adams said. “You see how fluid the shot is through the feet and then you work your way up.”

Then, there are Rondo’s large hands.

“That’s a little bit of an issue with him,” Adams said. “It’s good to have big hands, but he’s working on certain things as far as catching and so on so that he can catch and release and spin the ball in the right way.”

Boston Globe – Celtics’ Rajon Rondo refining his shot

It’s been quite the journey for Rondo’s jump shot. At the start of last season, while Ron Adams was still with the Bulls, we saw what appeared to be an improved mid-range shot from Rondo, and this year has shown to be more of the same. I guess when you’ve got a year off, there’s plenty of time to refine the small things that go into making up one’s shooting motion. Much credit to Ron Adams for finding time help too — he must find himself busy in his first year with the C’s: from assisting with the learning curve of a rookie coach, to learning and teaching the team’s defensive schemes, to also taking the time to work so in-depth with Rondo’s shot. It’s nice to see Rondo comfortable enough to heed the advice of a  coach he wasn’t very familiar with at the season’s start.

His development with the three ball is great as well; there aren’t many great point guards in the NBA who can’t shoot from beyond the arc, and adding this to his bag of tricks should only help make hims harder to guard when he’s back to 100%. Speaking of being 100%, the article mentions his scoring struggles from close range and at the basket. We’re used to seeing pretty much all of Rondo’s points come at the basket, which makes it odd to see him score in bunches from mid range and deep.

But because Rondo is still working his way into form after missing nearly a year, his explosiveness isn’t quite there yet, which has affected him when it comes to his shots around the rim.

In fact, Rondo has made less than half of his 67 attempts from less than 5 feet of the rim. He is also just 3 of 21 on shots within 5-9 feet of the rim.

“Each game, he gets a little bit better, but I think he’s getting in an area where he’s close to the basket and he doesn’t have quite the snap that he once had on his drives,” Adams said.

I’d tend to agree with Adams and Globe writer Baxter Holmes. We’ve seen Rondo dominate in the paint for the past five years. Physical limitations as well as mental hesitations may still exist with Rondo, and there’s really no need for him to rush back into fully playing the way he once did until he’s ready to do so. I don’t think we should be worried with low numbers in the paint, unless it continues into next season.

Page 2: Wyc plans to retire Ainge’s number

Last weekend at the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck was asked a question about Danny Ainge and responded in the most complimentary way possible.

“I plan to put (Ainge’s) number in the rafters one day for all he’s done,” Grousbeck said. “He’s not going to accept that, but…”

There was nothing after the “but…” Instead, Grousbeck just sort of trailed off and moved on.

CSNNE – Celtics want to retire Ainge’s number

Makes sense. He won two championships as a player in Boston, and then came back as a GM to get us (at least) one more. Even if he “doesn’t accept it”, I’d tend to think it’s appropriate. Of course if we retire the numbers of Ainge, Pierce, Garnett, and possibly Ray Allen — there wont be many numbers for new guys to choose from. Which makes me think: If we ended up drafting Marcus Smart, I wonder what he’d do regarding his jersey number. Obviously, #33 is off limits, but Smart also happens to have the number 33 tattooed on his triceps. That’d be an interesting conversation.

And finally, Crash gets surgery

Gerald Wallace underwent successful surgery on Tuesday to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee and bone spurs on his left ankle.

And with those two surgeries, Wallace’s first season with the Boston Celtics is now officially over.

“The ankle alone was three to four months to be cleared,” said Celtics head coach Brad Stevens. “He’s out (for the season).”

If only that were the only injury of note for the Celtics.

CSNNE – Wallace undergoes surgery

If he was hard to trade two weeks ago, he’ll be damn near impossible to trade now. 30-something year old making $10 million for the next two years and coming off of season-ending surgery? G’luck with that, Danny.

The rest of the links:

CSNNE – Which Boston GM has the most pressure to succeed? | C’s continue to find motivation through losses | Wakeup call: Commissioner’s in the tank for for Sixers

Boston Herald – Rajon Rondo does job outside | Veteran’s effort not lost on Ainge

Masslive – Danny Ainge on incorporating analytics | Sullinger: C’s follow Brad Steven’s lead, will not quit | Stevens likes C’s makeup

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  • dk

    I think the retiring numbers thing has to calm down–it cheapens the meaning of the honor by retiring anybody who ever did anything good for this franchise (in the latter years)–and yes, we are going to run out of numbers. PP and KG (because of what he did to change the team and his loyalty) THATS IT! Bill Fitch won a title as a coach, do we hold a ceremony for him too? What about Chris Ford? I personally don’t think Max or Reggie should have been retired either but whatever…

    • RedsLoveChild

      No problem with Max, he played a key role in 1981 {Finals MVP} and 1984 {huge Game 7 vs. LA}.

      Two extremely questionable ones :

      1} Ed Macauley {honored for being traded to acquire rights for Russell}
      2} Reggie Lewis {honored for dying young and unexpectedly}

      • dk

        I hear you–but I felt like the Max retirement was more about generating some good will for the franchise in like 2006 or 07 because they were terrible. 1985 injury fallout aside, if he was worthy of the honor, it should have happened soon after he retired after the big 3. Just felt gimmicky to me. Agree with Macauley and probably Loscy too.
        Just feel like in 10 years all the players are going to be wearing numbers in the 80s and 90s because everything will be gone. They should do what the Yankees do then and have their own hall of fame or monument/ring of honor instead of retiring 40 numbers.

        • KGino

          I think we’re all in agreement Ray doesn’t get his retired… Maybe Ainge can do what Loscy did and have his name put up there instead of number (if that actually happens… which I’m not opposed to).

        • RedsLoveChild

          Yeah, there was a “gimmicky” aspect to it.

          Max and the Celts had a very “bad divorce” in 1985…and they did retire it during a bleak 2003-04 season, to pump attendance for at least one night.

  • Curt Hays

    Thank you for mentioning the fact that Rondo is comfortable enough to listen to a coach he was not familiar with. That says a lot about his character.

  • Curt Hays

    If you notice, Rondo has been driving a lot lately and instead of going to the hoop for a layup he throws the ball over his head like some sort of weird floater. He’s been missing all of those.

    I’ve almost broken two TVs now because he keeps doing that stupid move. Maybe it’s because he doesn’t get to the hole, maybe it’s because he is trying it too often, but he’s taking an ill-advised shot instead of good layups.

  • Brian Pahlm

    Sounds like drafting this guy with the Hawks pick might be a good idea then.

  • wil

    i dont like marcus smart to be honest. I dont think his game will translate well into the NBA its the way he drives. most guards will throw it high to avoid getting blocked, smart has a low release on his drives. And i doubt he’d get as much free throws in the NBA.

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