Let the Rajon Rondo-Knicks rumors begin again in earnest.
A little over a month after saying that he didn’t think the triangle offense wouldn’t be a good fit for him, Rondo backtracked on Sunday, saying that he thinks he could adapt to anything if he wanted to.
“I had a comment earlier about it, but if I put my mind at it, I think I can be good at anything,” Rondo said of the triangle offense, via Ryan Lazo of the New York Post.
Rondo also noted how much he enjoys playing at Madison Square Garden.
“It’s one of those arenas,” Rondo said. “That’s the biggest lights. It’s Broadway. Madison Square Garden is the mecca of basketball, so it’s always great going there and perform in front of a lot of fans.”
Though Rondo was bashed by then-coach Derek Fisher for his criticism of the triangle, Carmelo Anthony has still been putting on a long-distance sell job. Given how hard Anthony has been pushing his team to do something big in free agency, a Rondo-Knicks union may not be too far-fetched.
Respect runs deep between Kings guard Rajon Rondo and Lakers legend Kobe Bryant. It just does so in a bizarre and beautiful way.
After the Kings defeated the Lakers by the final of 106-98 on Tuesday, Rondo spoke with reporters and commented on the close nature of his friendship with The Black Mamba. “I don’t have a lot of friends,” Rondo said per Baxter Holmes of ESPN. “I’m just friends with a lot of a–holes.”
Rondo and Kobe grew close. Why? Rondo: "I don’t have a lot of friends. I’m just friends with a lot of a–holes."
— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) March 16, 2016
The two have shared a long history, their fierce battles in the NBA Finals eventually giving way to a sense of mutual admiration as competitors. Bryant was said to be disappointed when the Lakers failed to sign Rondo in free agency last summer.
This definitely isn’t the first time Bryant and Rondo have used the “a–hole” metaphor to lovingly sum up their friendship either, having exchanged the following compliments back in 2014 (per SB Nation):
Kobe on how Rondo will survive the rebuild: "From what I understand he's an asshole like me, so he'll manage."
— Paul Flannery (@Pflanns) January 17, 2014
Rondo, on being called an asshole by Kobe: "That's a great compliment, coming from Kobe. I feel the same way about him."
— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) January 18, 2014
Bryant and Rondo also caused a social media firestorm later that year by having breakfast together, a meeting the latter famously dubbed “just two a–holes having breakfast.”
Upon Bryant’s retirement at the end of the season, the NBA will surely miss its most weirdly wonderful friendship. But at least the two have combined to forever form the world’s most exclusive fraternity: The A–Hole Association.
Image Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
H/T FOX Sports
Carmelo Anthony is not planning to take a back seat when the New York Knicks begin rebuilding their roster this offseason. The veteran forward intends to recruit players, and he already knows who he is going to start with.
On Monday, Anthony openly admitted to reporters that he is going to try to convince Rajon Rondo to sign with the Knicks.
“I think Rondo — just me personally, I don’t want to be tampering — but I’ve heard he said he wouldn’t thrive in a system like this,” Anthony said, via Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. “I think he’d be perfect in a system like this.”
Carmelo would likely have to do a lot of convincing with Rondo, because the point guard has already said that he does not see himself as a fit for the triangle offense. Rondo is not a good jump-shooter, but Anthony insists that doesn’t matter.
“It is a misconception about that. Some of the keys of our offense is penetration, getting in the paint,” he said. “Pushing the pace, transition. Creating in the paint for bigs, for yourself, everybody else. I think a point guard would love that. Especially a point guard who can penetrate, create for yourself, create for others. I think it’s a perfect opportunity for him.
“Put me at the head of the (meeting) table,” Anthony said. “And let’s go to work.”
The Knicks’ chances of signing Rondo probably improved slightly when they fired Derek Fisher, seeing as how Fisher had some harsh criticism for Rondo last month. New York would also have to clear cap space for Rondo, assuming Phil Jackson even wants to 30-year-old.
Does Jackson want Anthony’s input? That’s a question for another day.
Rajon Rondo is full of attitude, and that even comes clear in his interviews.
Rondo had 18 points and 12 assists in the Sacramento Kings’ 104-101 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on the road Thursday. The win was especially nice for Rondo, as he got revenge on his former team — one that essentially kicked him off the team last year.
When he did his postgame interview, he came very close to dropping an F-bomb but restrained himself and used some excellent censorship.
What kind of court is Dallas? https://t.co/v7A4in1K6w
— Aaron Bruski (@aaronbruski) March 4, 2016
Rondo, he is a real one.
The New York Knicks need a point guard and may pursue one in free agency, but it seems safe to say that said point guard won’t be Rajon Rondo.
Rondo is a point guard who likes the ball in his hands and isn’t known for his three point shooting, and he admitted on Friday that the triangle offense probably wouldn’t be a good fit for him.
Knicks coach Derek Fisher, who runs the triangle offense, got quite defensive and fired back at Rondo on Sunday when asked if it concerned him that an elite player like Rondo would say something like that.
“That’s your decision on whether or not he’s elite or not,” Fisher shot back, via Marc Berman of the New York Post. “You can’t ask him when he wasn’t very successful playing against [the triangle] whether or not he wants to play in it. That’s his opinion. That’s fine. He doesn’t play for us. We’re not concerned about his opinion about us at this point.”
Fisher really came out firing considering Rondo was pretty directly asked about the triangle offense and gave an honest – and probably correct – answer. Rondo won’t adapt, and anyone who thinks he will would just get a situation like that which came about in Dallas. It simply doesn’t suit his strengths, and even before this, it would have been highly unlikely that Rondo and the Knicks would have had mutual interest when the point guard hits free agency during the summer. That said, Fisher isn’t the first person in the NBA to question whether Rondo is as good as he and many others think he is.
Rajon Rondo sat out Tuesday night’s game against the Dallas Mavericks with a back injury, but the Sacramento Kings point guard did his best to impact the game from the bench.
And we’re not talking about cheering for his teammates or calling out plays. Instead, Rondo appeared to make an attempt at kicking Mavs point guard Deron Williams in the middle of play.
— Enrique García (@KikeGarciaL) January 6, 2016
Was that intentional? Here’s a closer look:
Williams ended up hitting the game-winning shot in double-OT, so he got the last laugh. In fact, it didn’t even look like he noticed Rondo trying to kick him. The two shared a hug after the game. Mavs fans might have an even tougher time believing what Rondo recently said about Dallas after they see that clip.
Rajon Rondo’s brief stint with the Dallas Mavericks last season flopped worse than Vlade Divac in the early 2000s. The four-time All-Star point guard was acquired by the team last trade deadline but proved himself to be a square peg in a round hole within head coach Rick Carlisle’s offense. Rondo averaged just 9.3 points per game and 6.5 assists per game in 46 appearances as a Maverick. Not to mention that he butted heads with Carlisle (both in public and in private), quit on the team in their first-round defeat to the Rockets last postseason, and hightailed it out of Dallas-Fort Worth upon the end of the season, burning all of his bridges along the way.
Surprisingly however, Rondo, now a Sacramento King, has nothing but good things to say about the Mavericks organization. Ahead of Tuesday’s game in Dallas, his first since leaving the team over the summer, ESPN’s Tim MacMahon relayed for the first time some comments Rondo made after the Mavericks played the Kings in Sacramento earlier this season.
“I had a tough three, four months in Dallas,” said Rondo. “It hurt, but it helped as well. I’m in a great situation. I have no regrets about what happened in Dallas. Everything happens for a reason; I’m a big believer in that.
“They’re all good people,” he continued. “They treated me really well. I have nothing but love for that organization. Mark Cuban’s a great guy. I don’t have any regrets. I went through what I went through.”
Rondo, who has found his groove again in Sacramento to the tune of 12.0 points per game, 6.5 rebounds per game, and a league-leading 11.5 assists per game this season, appears willing to let bygones be bygones. Though messy, the breakup proved to be best for all parties with Rondo rehabilitating his value and the Mavericks at a surprising 19-15 on the year, good enough for fifth in the Western Conference.
Of course, Rondo could just be attempting to rebuild his public image after some ugly comments he directed towards referee Bill Kennedy last month. But credit to the former Kentucky Wildcat for putting all of last season’s drama behind him and successfully returning to an All-Star level of play this season.
H/T NBA Reddit