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Celebrating Rondo

 

The continued emergence of Rajon Rondo as a legitimate NBA star has been one of the early story lines of the Boston-Cleveland series. Highlight reels celebrating Rondo plays have popped up in several places, with particular attention (see here and here) on Rondo’s Dream Shake-esque score on Anderson Varejao.

A few of his passes really stood out to me, and I didn’t want them to be forgotten—especially the one highlighted below. Maybe I’m crazy, but I think this might be one of the 10 best passes of Rajon’s career. The juke that preceded it, the crazy angle on the pass, the strength to get it all the way out to Allen—it’s just an amazing pass.

And something we should appreciate:

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    shake, bake n dish. mo is merely a traffic cone in this series.

    btw: see the nice shove by kg on mo to create more space. all the little things.

  • specialK

    great pass but Rondo does it all the time.

    He is the best at making the pass where nobody else can see the angles and where he throws it to a spot that he cannot possibly see a receiver.

    Nash is the only one that comes close

  • kgkgkgkg

    kg pushed mo at the end of the video…lol

  • Barry

    great pass. he and nash are in a league of their own in this regard.

    I really hope B Jennings continues to develop as playoffs full of Rondo, Rose, and Jennings match-ups is really something to look forward to.

    too bad this video provides more reasons to hate Garnett. I don’t want to hate him but he just keep acting like a total punk.

  • Zack

    Rondo creates angles that other people can’t even think about. I thought this was a missed pass that fortuitously went to Allen! My favorite though was against Miami (I think) when the cameras caught Rondo gathering the ball and throwing it while spinning the ball around a defender to Paul Pierce all before the person guarding him could blink!

  • Zack

    Oh and who cares that KG pushed Mo a little? Mo reacted like he was shot. The Cavs aren’t all clean Mouseketeers, Shaq pushes and slams people and somehow earns free throws out of it!

  • complexity

    I hated this guy in 2008. Now he is one of my favorite players in the league.

  • Berkcelt

    Loved the Dream shake (but he did drag his pivot foot), but I remember that pass play’s greatness sticking out to me too while watching. I couldn’t believe he found Ray. And it’s not like it’s your typical bailout pass, he had his eye on Ray the whole time.

  • Cptn Bubbles

    I’ve heard Rondo loves math. He must have had A+’s, a 4.0, & finally just asked to take over at the front of the class to lecture on Geometry. It is rumored that Rajon’s family tree includes both Archimedes & Euclid. Wouldn’t Archimedes be jumping out of his toga if he witnessed the wicked angles of those passes (not even mentioning the head & body fakes). Maybe that is a good nickname for Rajon, Archimedes.

    There are baffled nerds everywhere throwing their protractors into the air after Rondo makes one of his sick passes. There really should be a special wing for Rajon in the NBA Hall of Fame for sickest passes via either hand ever.

    Having said all this, sometimes his passes are too slick for some Cs to react to. Rondo can be the showman AT TIMES, but there are other times when he HAS to gear it back & be CONVENTIONAL to avoid the turnover (some passes were just not meant for Perk, Shelden etc.). If a fancy pass means turnover than go conventional. Whatever it takes to win the game.

    I loves his passes, but I’d trade them for his focused, stifling D. Why? Because that’s how I see us advancing. If we hold them below 90 we can definitely do it. Running up and down the court exchanging baskets with beautiful passes will not work. I loved what Doc said in a time out, ‘we are going to run clock….on defense…making them work & use up all the clock.’ That was really good stuff.

    You can tell Rondo is intense on D when their hapless guard picks up his dribble. It’s like blood in the water, & Rajon jumps on him cutting off all passing angles. If Rajon is in relax mode he will just stand there several feet away with 1 hand up. KG is great when someone picks up their dribble, & he is in uber D mode, just watch how he blankets them.

    I cannot stand to watch Varejao get offensive rebounds. Rajon got caught up in ball watching when he was within 6 feet of the ball coming off the rim. If you watch, whilst other players are ball watching, Varejao is MOVING TOWARD the ball. It is uncanny. Hard to believe but Rajon’s reflexes were not able to bail him out of his ball watching, & he ran into Varejao trying to get to the ball. It’s astonishing how Varejao IS MOVING when other guys are just watching. When Rajon is like that we can expect a triple double. In order to hold their points down we can’t be giving up 2nd shots. Rajon really is capable of FINISHING our defensive stops by defensive rebounding. By using his quickness & ability to predict the angle the ball is coming off Rajon can rebound like no other pg. When Rajon is getting to all those long defensive rebounds it severely limits the other teams scoring plus it is the spark to our fast break.

  • mike

    ^
    Cptn Bubbles gets up, brushes his knees off, then wipes his lips with the back of his hand.
    (a most embarrassing fawning display)

  • KC

    We had game 1 of the miami series televised in Australia.

    In the 3rd quarter of that game, Rondo makes a similar pass to Pierce, who hits a 3.

    I think the miami pass was harder because he jumped off his wrong foot, floated out of bounds and looked like he would pull a hamstring (or worse!) while waiting for a clear path to make the pass at the absolute last second. Which is the only way the pass makes it to its target.

    Great passes, but geez, what about “never leaving your feet without knowing what your going to do”?

    Keep up the good work.

  • http://www.celticshub.com Zach Lowe

    @KC: I think that rule died when JOhn Stockton started getting airborne before passes.

  • Dan

    Love the KG shove. I have absolutely no problem with it either, considering how Varejao just hammers people at the rim.

  • Cptn Bubbles

    Go back to Clev. Mike & obsequiously kneel, grovel, & cower before Lebron’s bannerless throne. The title is Celebrating Rondo. If you don’t like to hear great things said about Rajon then stay on the Clev. boards or better yet TRY TO STOP HIM!

  • specialK

    @bubbles

    Funny post (your original). can you read that and put auto-tune it.

    you did bring up a point about defense that I was chiming in on during the daily dime chat.

    A lot of Mo and Delonte’s fast break chances in game 1 and game 2 were because of Rondo crashing the offensive boards. doc has to decide whether he wants Rondo to get more rebounds and rotate someone else up as the safety or have Rondo back off.

    It reminds me of how AI always had great steals numbers but experts always panned his defensive skills because he gambled and left his teammates exposed. hmmm, sounds like D-Wade

  • Cptn Bubbles

    @specialK

    Thank you for having a great sense of humor & understanding my use of hyperbole. What you say about the Off. boards is exactly what Doc preaches. He has said all along that he would rather give up the offensive board & get back on defense. That is why we rank so very low on offensive boards. You & Doc have a great point because the majority of our wins are really based on defense (holding teams to 90 or less points). We have a fantastic record of 30-3 in the regular season if we hold teams to 90 or less points. In the post season we are 4-0 when holding teams to 90 or less. Our two losses are when we let teams score over 100. So scoring a lot of points is not our strength, how we win the most games. When we try to be like the Golden St. Warriors we are at our absolute WORST.

    I don’t remember hearing Doc say it, but some have said Rondo is allowed to off. rebound at his discretion because just about everyone else is running back. Rajon is probably the BEST offensive rebounding pg in the association so it is tough to say just get back Rajon. I agree with you about stopping transition & defense being most important, but Rajon is so gifted at rebounding. It’s a dilemma but a good dilemma. Ok, yes, you are right, the majority of the time Rajon should get back, but occasionally he should sneak in there when there is a great opportunity. Most importantly though is Rajon defensively rebounding. We need the defensive rebounds a kazillion times more than the offensive rebounds.

  • keith

    wait, so Rondo almost averaging a triple double in the series against chicago last year wasn’t a coming out party? Every year people try to find the, “next” guy…rondo isn’t it…

    cleveland’s defense has no idea on how to stop him, that’s why he’s throwing up 20/5/20 games – the lack of Cleveland’s defense is making rondo shine – Mo williams makes rondo look like isiah thomas, he is that bad.

    With that being said – the Celtics have arguably played their best two games of the season in Cleveland…the Cavs played their worst two games of the season in cleveland. The Cavs will turn this around, and don’t get upset if this becomes a dogfight – KG limping around, LBJ’s elbow, and crybaby davis, I just hope everyone is healthy enough to witness a legitiment omback.

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    @bubbles. LOL. “It is rumored that Rajon’s family tree includes both Archimedes & Euclid”.

    Rondo definitely needs a cool math-nerd nickname….mixes well with that jive talking kentucky twang he talks. If the Matrix have Neo, the Celtics have Geo.

    @mike is just mad cause the cavs are the ones who are really “going down”

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