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.
There were times early in the Big Three era when the Celtics appeared to begin games ahead, 10-0, because the opponents were so intimidated. Rondo would grab the opening tip and take command of the game. He never allowed his personal issues or bad calls to unnerve him (as they did Friday).
Rondo insists that he pays no attention to his point guard brethren, but he was bothered that New Jersey’s Deron Williams (shooting 41 percent for an 8-20 team) was chosen to the Eastern Conference All-Star team as a reserve. Rondo is leading the Eastern Conference in assists and likely would have piled up more if he hadn’t missed eight games with a sprained right wrist.
Asked if he is using the All-Star omission as motivation, he said, “Not me. It is what it is.’’
Rondo may be one of the more intelligent players in the NBA and plays mind games with the media, attempting to confuse reporters with his answers, a guise for hiding his emotions.
He is not a revealing player, so he wasn’t going to express his disappointment about being left out of All-Star Weekend during his prime years. Allen and Garnett have the age excuse, but Rondo took it as a personal slight from the conference’s coaches.
If Gary Washburn is correct with this assumption, then Rajon Rondo is no where near ready to lead this team. Sulking over an All-Star omission is the definition of mentally weak. True competitors would have responded with a 15 point, 9 rebound, 22 assist, 4 steal peformance.
I felt bad for Rondo when our readers blasted him after Friday night's loss. I thought the criticism was over the top. I have no tolerance for this type of behavior. This is Rondo's 6th season, for christ sake.
On Page 2, Kyle Korver calls the Celtics the "old guy team."
"When I was in college, we used to play pick up games in a little league," Korver said Friday night. "And there was always like the old-guy team. They weren't really that athletic or anything, but they killed everybody because they played so smart and they backdoor cut and they set screens and they knocked down shots. The Celtics are like them, but good players. It's a compliment. They play really good team basketball. So it's going to be a challenge."
"They're such a veteran team. They're never out of a game," Korver said. "They're just a grind it out team. Obviously, they've got several really, really great players. And some Hall of Famers who have a lot of pride … They do such a good job of playing off each other. It's never just one guy for them just doing the whole thing. They play such great team basketball. Just veteran guys that know how to play the game."
Korver is dead-on, except for the part about pride. I didn't see much pride Friday night in Toronto.
The rest of the links:
Sportando – Celtics to play in Italy, Turkey next year | ESPN Boston – 3-on-3 Celtics vs Bulls | Market conditions | Herald – No time for Celtics to worry about time | CSNNE – Bradley brings energy to Cs roster | Celtics currently own worst enemy | How do Rose/Rondo stack up? | Globe – Havlicek gives kudos to Pierce | Taunton Gazette – Celtics no longer headed in right direction |
(Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images)