Post-game Reactions

That’s the assertion our friend Kelly Dwyer from Yahoo’s Ball Don’t Lie gives the 24 year old point guard. Here’s the full explanation for giving Dwyer the 3rd spot.

A big jump for Rajon, who could be incredibly overrated, or playing the role of the point guard at a level that my tiny brain just can’t understand. I’ll split the difference, and hand him the top five spot. Some Celtics fans were a little upset at the way Rondo let a good group of point men fly past him this season, but that’s the way the position works in this era, with no hand checking to help stop these flyweights. Rondo is just 24, he nearly cracked double-figure assists last season, and he led the league in steals as well.

Can’t argue much with that. Just for the record here, let’s look at how the top 5 overall shook out:

5) Derrick Rose
4) Steve Nash
3) Rajon Rondo
2) Deron Williams
1) Chris Paul

Not going to find a lot to beef about with that setup. I’ll throw it out there for everyone though. Does Rondo deserve to be higher? Lower? And does Chris Paul deserve to be the number one point guard right now, coming off an injury plagued season? I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t take Rondo over him, but Williams? I’d surely have to think twice about.

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Brian Robb

Brian Robb co-founded CelticsHub in 2009 and is the currently editor-in-chief. He is a producer and reporter at 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston and also contributes to Boston.com and Bleacher Report among other outlets.
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  • ball on the floor

    of course deron should be number one. he is bigger and stronger than paul and he always wins the battle when they are playing against each other. rondo must develope the mid-range jumper and improve free throws to go further. love.

  • dslack

    Despite giving up size, Chris Paul is a better rebounder than Deron. For the last 3 seasons, Paul has averaged being a better 3PT shooter, too, though they’re pretty close there.

  • Patrick

    Williams should be #1, Paul #2, Rondo #3, Rondo has the potential to be better than both of them if he shoots the ball just a little bit better. He’s a better defender, more athletic, not as strong. It’s his jump shot thats holding him back. He has one plus that I think is much greater than Paul, and Williams, and that is his spirit to win. No one in modern day basketball plays as hard as Rondo. Especially when it comes Playoff time.

  • Kb

    D-Will should be #1. not sure if Derek Rose deserves to be that high just yet. Def in the top 10 though…

  • Reggie

    That yahoo list is EXACTLY correct. If anything, one could argue Westbrook or Billups to be #5 instead of Rose. Id take Billups over Rose.

  • topher

    As a die-hard Hornets fan, it is hard to say, but I would tend to put Rondo at 3-b. The man has skills but his attitude with regards to disrespecting Paul rubs me the wrong way. I am all for competitivness, but it was just a bit too far.

    Based off of pure PG appreciation, I can’t move Rondo below 4. I can’t drop Nash out of the top 3 until he starts to age, his vision and shooting makes it his spot to lose. Rondo doesn’t yet have the shot, mid-range or FT, that the other 3 have, so that puts him behind them in my book. If I am being pragmatic, I will give Williams the nod for #1 going into this season. There are still questions about Paul’s durability and how his style of play affects that potential problem. With Paul out all last season, I don’t think it is fair to Williams to not give him the nod until the season plays out. He earned that title last season in my book, yet it took Paul not being involved for him to get it. If Paul is healthy I don’t think there is any way he doesn’t take the #1 PG title back. His shooting is just gotten too good. No-one but Hornets fans really saw it, but before he got hurt he was pushing 50% FG 40% 3PT 90% FT land, all while posting double digit assists and leading in steals. If he can put that together an entire season while scoring 20ppg, there is no debate.

    In the end we are splitting hairs at this point, and in my book, for Rondo to have played his way and grown his game into the conversation says a lot about the man as a player. I know I wouldn’t trade him for any PG if I already had him on my roster. The grass is green enough!

  • Chris O

    I this it should go

    1.) Deron
    2.) CP3
    3.) Rondo
    4.) Nash
    5.) Rose

    And that really is how it should be. I love CP3 and he is probably number 1 in talent right now but he missed a ton of games to injurt and Deron looks to be getting better. Rondo oculd be the biggest freak of them all an I have to put him ahead of Nash (whom I love btw). Nash is still more polished on offense (severly so) but Rondo is the best defensive PG in the league…and Steve Nash…well I may guard some PG better than him. PPL leave out defense too much. Rose is also a freak who is probably the best pure athlete out of the entire top 5. His offense is silly and he could jump up in assists and rebounds this year…if he defense catches up look for him to be the future #1 at the position.

  • Jeff

    Funny how people’s perception can constantly shift.

    The year before last CP3 was UNCONTESTED as the top PG coming off the single season record for steals while making Tyson Chandler look like a legit Center and the team winning what 56 games?

    Now all of a sudden people are buying into DWill’s self proclamation of being the best PG in the league.

    People actually were saying that Jameer Nelson was playing like the MVP of the post season last year before the Magic played the C’s. Then he got schooled hard core by Rondo while D-Will couldn’t even win a game against LA.

    Williams has a better supporting cast than CP3 so I don’t even give it a second thought.

    D-Will can score I’ll give him that but the fact is CP3’s the better PG.

    However overall skill from passing, stealing, rebounding, speed, athleticism, and ESPECIALLY defense…it’s not even close Rondo’s better.

    Rondo has all the tools to become one of the best PG’s in NBA history, with his freak rebounding ability, stealing, defensive prowess, speed, athleticism, and of course his shake and bake moves which are WAY better than any of the others in the discussion.

    CP3 and D-Will are better right now…but not for long.

    If Rondo improves his Jumper and FT’s over the next year or two, he will blow the other’s in the discussion off the map.

    I’m sure fans of other teams will believe this is biased because we’re Celtics fans, but believe me when I say that it’s simply because we’ve seen what this kid can do night in and night out…and he’s good…scary good.

  • Well My list goes like this:

    1. CP
    2. Deron Williams
    3. Nash
    4. Rose
    5. Rondo

    These are a few problems I have with Rondo still:

    1. In the playoffs, he was inconsistent. Some games he had way to many TOs other games he missed LAYUPS.
    2. His Free Throws are horrid even if he gives the excuse “My hands are too big.”
    3. Kobe was gaurding him from the paint and he had the ball at the free throw line he didn’t even ATTEMPT to shoot it. He was rendered useless when Kobe gaurded him. Good players come through no matter what. (Unless your name is Lebron james)
    4. His career avg. from 3 point land is 25%
    5. Hes playing along side 3 hall of famers. Put him on a team like… i dont know the Nets. i want to see how he does.

    -In short, I like Rondo and all, but im just not seeing ALL the hype that everyone puts around him. Go look up his career avg.’s compared to the 4 listed above him. But when the “Big Three” become the “Retired Three” I want to see how he does.

  • Grady

    1) D.Williams (he’s a BEAST on both ends of the floor)
    2) Rondo
    3) Billups
    4) Rose
    5) Nash
    6) T.Parker
    7) CP3 (shot first Marbury clone…without the attitude though), plus the league let’s him do whatever he wants
    8) Westbrook
    9) Collinson (butchered his name…new Point for Indy)
    10a) Jennings
    10b) Brooks

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    Who would I take if we were choosing teams for next season?
    1) DWill
    2) Paul
    3) Rondo
    4) Billups
    5) Rose
    6) Westbrook
    7) Nash
    8) Jennings
    9) Parker
    10) Brooks

    – Baron could be top4 if he cared
    – no Tyreke cause he’s not a PG, even if he plays one on TV
    – and gotta give a huge honorable mention to Andre Miller…..respect. i swear him and Pierce must be related.

  • Chris O

    @ Jordan – I can’t take you seriously for faulting Rondo’s flaws but ignoring the fact his defense is literally the best in the league at his position and Steve Nash can’t guard me and you….really though? Also his career averages based on what? PPG only? Don’t also forget to take into consideration he plays few MPG than your other 4. Rose is a better scorer but Rondo is better in EVERY OTHER aspect of the game currently. Rebounding, assists, defense Rondo is better than Rose…

  • Jeff

    @ Jordan

    That’s fine…you can have your pick and I’ll take mine and see who has the better career.

    Rose over Rondo? For what? The guy doesn’t shoot the 3 any better and may be a little better on the J and FT line but Rondo out rebounds, has more assists and oh btw…he plays D better than any of them.

    Something I don’t recall seeing Rose OR D-Will do all that well.

    Rose will have an All Star career…
    Rondo will have a HOF career. Bank on it.

    And one more thing that people overlook…he may play on a team with 3 future HOF’s and the difference between him and the other’s…he is the leader of his team. And now he’s the best player on his team. I’m afraid any of those other PG’s wouldn’t even be close. Sorry, Rondo’s the best leader of any PG in the league.

    D-Will – Shoot first
    CP3 – Shoot first but more gifted in passing and stealing than D-Will
    Rose – NOT a leader
    Nash – only one on the list who is a leader but skills are diminishing

    Other than that I’m afraid that Rondo’s overall skills are superior in every way other than shooting.

    He drives better, rebounds better, is faster, more athletic, a better defender, and has better ball insticts.

    Overall game=Rondo
    Flashy stats=the other guys

  • Rajon Rondo (Haha)

    Why should CP3 be above me if he was out alot of last year because of injury?

  • topher

    Guys, CP3 is not a shoot first PG. If you watched him more than the games he plays your team you would know that. Many times the coaches had to jump him about getting his because the team couldn’t make wide open shots. No joking, he will go the first 5 minutes of almost everything game without an attempt unless he is given a gift shot. Just because he scores A LOT for a PG does not make him a shoot first kind of guy.

    Also, I will revise my list to make Nash and Rondo even at 3. I did forget his defense, and that is counter to my normal thinking. But to say he is the best defensive PG in the league is a bold statement. I would put Paul defensive stats and ability up against his any day. At worse they would be a push. So for those who want to put Rondo above Paul because of defense you aren’t paying attention to the guy who if not for injury was on pace for his third consecutive steals title with a sick defensive rating.

  • 1.Rondo
    3.CP- Atitude Sucks

  • rondo had nearly a full steal more per game last season than paul had the previous season (which was his best). get yer head out of paul’s lap.

  • cmac

    1.DWiLL (Untill CP3 takes it back)
    2. CP3

    rest of the list is spot on Rondo is #3 when he plays and the arguement I like to make is through the first 3 quarters Rondo might be #1 but he shies away at the end because he can’t shoot free throws or Pierce takes over… whatever the reason CP3 and Dwill are better 4th quarter PGs than him

  • Totally agree with Brian. CP3 is still no.1 and Deron after that.

    Rondo is good, but he needs to show that he can shoot a jumper consistently

  • topher

    Shut it up: when was the last time you took your head out of your own lap? Try to Google some stats before you bring your weak crap in here.

    Rondo 2009/10 season: 2.4 steals per game
    Paul 2008/09 season: 2.8 per game.

    Way to make your comments pointless, fool.

  • Nashfan

    1.Nash-he is a offensive beast no one PG in NBA cannot guard him. If you double team him he will dish an assist. if you dont double team him he will break you with his shots. He is one of the best PG ever in NBAand best offensive PG ever. He is the only player who shoots 50% FG 40% Threes and 90%FT four seasons in a row.
    2. Rondo – he is dangerous on both sides of the court

    3. Deron Williams- He is good all-around player

    4.Evans- he is good

    CP3 sucks.

  • Batman

    I don’t know guys i still feel Nash is third while Rondo is fourth

    Rondo is great, I respect him a lot, but i feel Steve Nash still has the skills even for one more year to be better

    And where’s Jason Kidd in these discussions?

  • JP

    Deron should be 1, and I think that Rose should be 4 and Nash 5. Rondo is ranked about where he should be since he doesn’t have a reliable shot just yet, and still struggles with free throws.

  • JP

    @ Jeff

    I totally disagree on Rose not being a leader. I think he definitely is a leader and he has already shown it to some extent in his brief career. Getting the bulls into the playoffs last year as essentially the main and only offensive weapon showed that. I think he will just attain more leadership qualities as he ages and get experience in the league.

  • John Kensmark

    Paul doesn’t suck, but he *is* overrated, especially considering his defense. He certainly shoots better than Rondo, though. If Rondo can just learn to shoot free throws (which is more important for a fast point guard than jump shooting), then it may not matter for this rating if Paul comes back as strong as ever. On the other hand, maybe Paul’s defense will improve.

    Nash is hugely underrated, though, mostly because of his age and because he’s Canadian. (Come on, you know it’s true.) Kidd is underrated, too, because of his age and his perceived scoring problems.

    I do a simple quick-and-dirty stat rating where I add all the good stuff by season averages (a point scored is worth a point, and so is a rebound, a steal, a block, and an assist) and then subtract turnovers. It doesn’t fully account for defense, of course, though, or shooting percentage, and it produces this list:

    1 Paul
    2 Rose
    3 Williams
    4 Nash
    5 Rondo
    6 Kidd

    with 2-5 grouped very closely. But I also look at the 82games Simple Ratings (which are the +/- type), which for last season go like this:

    1 Nash
    2 Williams
    3 Kidd
    4 Paul
    5 Rondo
    6 Rose

    I love Rondo’s game and dedication and wouldn’t trade him, period, but I’m a homer. He just needs to learn to shoot free throws.

  • Dan

    1. CP3
    2-5 – some combination of Williams, Nash, Rondo, and Billups.
    Source: http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/psl_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&per_minute_base=36&type=advanced&is_playoffs=N&year_min=2010&year_max=2010&season_start=1&season_end=-1&age_min=0&age_max=99&height_min=0&height_max=78&lg_id=&franch_id=&is_active=Y&is_hof=&pos=G&qual=&c1stat=ws_per_48&c1comp=gt&c1val=.100&c2stat=&c2comp=gt&c2val=&c3stat=&c3comp=gt&c3val=&c4stat=&c4comp=gt&c4val=&order_by=ws
    Even in an injury plagued season CP3 comes out definitively on top in terms of WS/48. I hesitate to rank the others in any definitive order however because of a sense that WS/48 might overrate/underrate certain aspects of each players game (Rondo – defensive contributions, ability to run the offense, and the regular season malaise might have been underrated, while Billups’ ability to initiate the Nuggets’ offense might be overrated).

    Somewhat surprisingly, Rose comes out very far towards the bottom, a product of his inability to get to the line, his average at best defense, his relatively low assist numbers, and poor jump shot.

    I also feel like there is a huge drop off after the top 5. I find it hard to take Kidd and Mo Williams seriously as top 10, “elite” point guards after watching them get manhandled by George Hill and Rondo in the playoffs.

  • Dan

    Two other quick notes-
    1. The notion that Deron or Paul are “shoot first” PGs seems kindof absurd to me as both had a higher assist % than any player not named Steve Nash (a list including Rondo). The Marbury comparison to CP3 seems especially laughable.
    2. I feel like one on one matchups shouldn’t be used as an absolute determinant of best PG. Rondo has trouble defending stronger PGs like Rose, Williams, and Billups. CP3 struggles against Deron Williams. George Hill, who Hollinger called the second best defensive PG in the league, couldn’t defend Steve Nash while Derek Fisher, a player who struggles to defend anybody, met some (relative to Nash’s usual talents) success. Does that mean Fisher is better than the multitudes of point guards who can’t defend Nash? No, it just means that different matchups can produce different results even if one point guard is better than the opposing point guard against every other point guard in the league.

  • Jason

    Rondo’s definitely in the top 5 and that’s good enough for me. I wouldn’t have predicted that a couple of years ago. When he’s on, he is as good any point in the league. The defense he played on Nelson for most of that series was incredible. There is not another guard who could have done that.

    Unfortunately, he’s not really in contention with Deron or Paul for top point guard honors. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the Celtics finished 15th in offensive efficiency the season the ball was in Rondo’s hands so much. Part of that has to do with his shooting efficiency which is just average despite his good FG percentage. But another part are the plays he leaves on the floor, the times he could pass the ball ahead and give Ray or Paul room to work with, and doesn’t, his inability to keep track of both Ray or Paul’s touches at the same time. How does a point guard not know that Pierce hasn’t shot the ball once in the quarter during a Finals game. That was inexcusable.

    One thing I could live without is him jumping up and down screaming for the ball whenever someone besides him deigns to dribble it a few times up the court. That’s annoying in an intramural game. I can’t imagine what that would feel like to Ray or Paul. Ray especially didn’t seem to like it.

  • Rondo Number 1… Nash, Rose,CP3 and Williams could not cover rondo. but he could cover them!

  • Jason your crazy! He is the best passing point gaurd in the league! And if he didnt pass to Pierce in the finals maybe he wasn’t open. Ever thought of that? And saying he screams for the ball if someone dribbles in near him? Your crazy. You must never watch basketball, get a life!! He was first in steals in the Nba and 4 in astists. CP3 and williams were not even on the top 5 in steals! So eat that

  • Renato Afonso

    I’m not even going to say anything about Rondo’s 3pt% and ft%. IT’s self-explanatory and reason enough to bump him behind Nash. I wonder where do you get the idea that Rondo is a good defensive player? Is it the steals he gets? Because he get them by risking too much. Tell me one player that has been shut down by Rondo? He is not a good on-ball defender, he just benefits from Boston’s defensive schemes whcih cover his weakness’. Seriously, is he a top 10 guard? Yes he is. Putting him in the top 5 is overrating him… Any other, and I mean ANY, other top 20 point guard would’ve punished Kobe and the Lakers for using that kind of defense.

  • Renato Afonso Wow when’s the last time you have seen rondo play? 07? You are saying he is not a good defender?!?! you crazy! you need to watch a celtics game

  • Kevin

    People can argue this all the time. Funny thing is Jason Kidd has almost entirely through his career been in the Top 5 PGs. Lets see why this is? He was NEVER a GREAT scorer hence why his highest PPG was 18.7, 13.6 for career. He was a very good defender 2.0 steals pg career, AWESOME PASSER 9.2 pg for career, Good rebounder 6.6 pg career, and the one intangible that CANNOT be measured TEAM LEADERSHIP.

    Rondo has a lot of similarities to Kidd. The last fact there DWill, CP3, nor any other Top 5 can claim. Honestly the Top 7 should be as follows:

    1. CP3
    2. Rondo
    3. Nash
    4. Billups
    5. Kidd
    6. DWill
    7. Rose

    I am NOT sold on DWill nor Rose’s leadership skills yet. Meanwhile we know CP3 may not be the best leader he is the best scorer in this group besides maybe Billups for career wise. Rose can score but all other skills arent as developed. They probably will develop but they arent there. Rose surely is NOT a leader yet.

    Field General of the court is supposed to be a PG if you are not that on your team then you cant really be part of the elite PGs.

    What Durant said about Rondo is very good. He said whenever he has a question he goes to Rondo to ask it.

    Billups also said that he likes playing with winners and Rondo is a winner.

    “It starts with Rondo,” said Team USA and Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski. “He wants to play defense. And he knows that the people behind him are playing defense, too.”

    “He’s looking every single time,” Chandler said. “For the big man, sometimes you’re guessing, ‘Is he shooting? Should I attack the boards, or is he passing?’ So it’s good to know, he’s looking to pass first.”

    Those things say it all about Rondo. Those are his peers and a well respected NCAA Coach.

    How much have we heard about DWill and his leadership?

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    if DWill played in NYC, he (and his hair) would be legend

  • Ross in Maine

    Wow, lots of great debate, it must be August.

    @ Jeff: right on. If you hadn’t said it, I would. I look at Rondo as a coach: how he does with his position, not flashy stats. He’s a brilliant passer and one of the smartest players in basketball. And .. he’ll only get better. I know he needs to grow in some areas, but I’m sure RR is a Hall of Fame player in the making.

  • Saying that Derrick Rose is not a good leader is honestly not even close. He’s the main man of the Bulls. On Rondo’s defense… You can avg. a good amount of steals and still be a bad on ball defender. There was an article on Chris Paul. It showed statistics of offensive production of the other team when he was in and out. Turned out the other teams avg. points per possesion went DOWN. The point is you can get steals, and not play defense. Im not bashing him at all. Im just saying i would take the 4 I listed above before him. Rondo Playoff stats:
    PPG 15.8 RPG 5.6 APG 9.3 SPG 1.9 BPG 0.1 FG% 0.463 FT% 0.596 3P% 0.375 MPG 40.6

    Steve nash:
    PPG 17.8 RPG 3.3 APG 10.1 SPG 0.2 BPG 0.1
    FG% 0.518 FT% 0.893 3P% 0.380 MPG 33.7

    notice 7 less minutes, notice percentages. Rondo beats him on 2 things: steals and rebounds with 7 minutes more play. Rose:

    PPG 26.8 RPG 3.4 APG 7.2 SPG 0.8 BPG 0.0 FG% 0.456 FT% 0.818 3P% 0.333 MPG 42.4

    Rondo and Rose. It really depends what you want out of a PG at this point. So Rose-Rondo is arguable. I take Rose personally.

    Oh by the way, you say “The only thing Rondo cant do is shoot” last time I checked, shooting was a pretty big part of the game of basketball. Am I right?

  • Chris O

    @Dan “The notion that Deron or Paul are “shoot first” PGs seems kindof absurd to me as both had a higher assist % than any player not named Steve Nash (a list including Rondo). The Marbury comparison to CP3 seems especially laughable.” Really because Rondo’s ASSIST RATIO is ONLY BELOW NASH’s out of players we are looking at:

    Player Ratio (Rank of all PGs who qualify)

    Nash 39.3 (3rd)
    Rondo 38.4 (5th)
    CP3 36.6 (6th)
    D Wil 34.9 (11th)
    Rose 21.2 (not even top 50)

    @ topher
    “Also, I will revise my list to make Nash and Rondo even at 3. I did forget his defense, and that is counter to my normal thinking. But to say he is the best defensive PG in the league is a bold statement. I would put Paul defensive stats and ability up against his any day. At worse they would be a push.”

    Dude really?? A push? Rondo is a much better defender. Paul is great at steals like Rondo but gets torched by most PG’s. He does the ‘O Lay’ D if he can’t steal. Rondo does not do that.

  • CelticBaller


    Who stopped Lebron in game 5 and 6, who stopped kobe’s shooting performance in game 7, what point guard has the most triple doubles in the nba?Rondo! and I watched every single celtics game this year, and everytime Rondo played CP3, D.Will, Rose, Nash and other PG’s, their stats were lower. and Rondo made the NBA 1st All defensive team. As soon as the other PG’s can get a triple double then talk to me.

  • steve

    everybody says rajon will eventually be a solid jump shooter and when he has achieved that, he will be the best point guard in the league. but when I compare rondo and derrick rose, I see that rose’s jumper got much better over one summer, whereas rondo’s j is basically the same it was last year, he may have improved it a little bit but he’s still hesitant to shoot.

    now don’t get me wrong I think rondo is an awesome player and I also think he definitely deserves his high rating, but at some point he’s got to be able to knock down long jumpshots on a regular basis.