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.
He’s as polarizing as they come. He’s immigration. He’s Israel. He’s Hobby Lobby. He’s a genius. He’s an a-hole. He’s so unselfish and so unselfish that he’s actually selfish. He’s misunderstood. He’s maniacal. He’s many things to many people and there’s very little middle ground. But as usual, that’s where the truth lies. And in the never-ending fight to win the Rondo debate, the truth is often ignored or just drowned out by all the yelling. So here in the dog days of summer, I wanted to take a second and reset the Rondo story. Just a quick reminder of how we got here. And for the sake of space and time and Stephen Hawking, we’ll start with the 2012 playoffs…
Five games later, the Celtics were up 3-2 and at home with a chance to claim their third Eastern Conference crown in five years. Then Lebron exorcised his demons and Miami won back-to-back titles, but in Boston, that series was about Rondo. He was the reason the Celtics almost stole it. He led the team in scoring (20.9), steals (1.9) and assists (11.3) a game. He was second in rebounding (6.9).
This wasn’t Rondo’s first impressive playoff performance — he’d made a young career out of rising to the occasion — but this was different. For the first five games, before LeBron’s awakening, Rondo was the best player in a series that included six future Hall of Famers. He dominated games for long stretches, and because he’s Rondo, he did so in a way that we’d never seen before.
People talked about 2012 Playoff Rondo the way they do 2014 Playoff Kawhi Leonard. He was a transcendent talent who was finally ready to shine and bridge the gap to another glorious era.
I’ve written so many pro-Rajon Rondo posts this year, I could challenge Jay and John for the presidency of the #9 fan club.
But here’s the deal… Rondo just doesn’t get his due respect from Celtics fans or media. We focus on the warts and ignore the strengths. Rondo is liked more by fans across the country than fans here. And all of it just flat pisses me off.
To be fair, Rich Levine points out how Rondo’s play has fallen off since that mesmerizing playoff series in 2012. The point of the article is that if Rondo is ever going to return to that level, now is the time.
Related: ESPN Boston – Summer Forecast: Cloud 9?
On Page 2, Perk takes the Ice Bucket Challenge and it’s fabulous.
Was that a water boarding or ice bucket challenge? Advice for Perk, close your mouth next time.
The rest of the links: