Those who have read my blogs know that I am not a fan of Rajon Rondo. He makes plays that are so spectacular that the casual fan and even some identified pundits consider him to be a keeper. I would trade him for a rebounder who could not shoot a lick, or a point guard who had half the assists Rondo accumulates, but fewer turnovers.
The Celtics lost a game last night by working at it. They were up by 18 points in the third quarter and were playing an inferior team in terms of talent.
Rondo made some plays in the first half that were just stunning. Behind the back, lobs, perfect bounce passes to cutting players, and one that was nothing short of remarkable when he went to pass behind his back, but instead dribbled the ball to himself around his back to set up a basket.
For all these great plays he has no respect for the prize until the end of the game. He plays possessions when his team is up like a blockhead playing horse. When you are up by 18 you don't try a low percentage pass. You make low percentage plays when your team is behind. The prize is the win, not a particularly snazzy assist.
The Celtics, it is true, cannot win without Rondo. If he stays within himself and plays intelligently they might win the championship. However, I doubt that will happen. The Celtics now have to go 6 or 7 games against the Sixers, when they should have won in 4. That fatigue will catch up with the veterans on the team.
Also, even if the Celtics prevail against the Sixers, the time will come when the opponents get tougher. Any of the four teams in the west will beat the Celtics, not because they are more talented--though the Thunder and Spurs may be--but because the Celtics have a point guard who plays as if he is from Chelm. He has a very good coach who says that Rondo is bright. He may be. But he plays foolishly with a dollop of arrogance as well.