It had been awhile since most Celtics players had seen Rajon Rondo. The All-Star point guard had spent the vast majority of the past month rehabbing his left knee after undergoing surgery in Florida. With Rondo’s doctors stationed in the Sunshine state, Rondo hadn’t been able to make it up to Boston for a game since his surgery, but that changed last night. Rondo was back on the bench and watched the Celtics put up their highest point total (118) in a game this season.
Our friend Greg Payne of ESPNBoston.com caught up with Rondo after the game for a couple quick comments.
“I’m good,” Rondo told Payne upon being asked how he was doing.
Pressed on whether he’d be available for the start of training camp for the 2013-2014 season, Rondo said: “I don’t have any set date [for a return]. I’m taking it one day at a time.”
Doc Rivers, Paul Pierce, Jeff Green and company reflected on the return of Rondo to the Garden after the game and there was a sharp consensus: it was nice to have the floor general back around
Rivers on Rondo’s return: “It was nice. It was nice. He told us today he was coming in, and it was good to have him back around. He’s moving okay. You know, it’s funny, I’m looking at it knowing he’s nowhere near, but that’s the first thing you look at. Having gone through that experience, we sat and talked about a lot of the stuff you have to go through. So it brought back these horrendous memories, actually. But he’s, from his doctors, they say he’s doing tremendous.”
Doc On how Rondo’s spirits seemed: “Oh, I don’t know. I have no idea. “I mean, I don’t care who you are, especially if you’re on a team sport I think these types of injuries are very lonely. Very hard. Because rehab is all by yourself with some stranger. And you’re away from your team. Just brutal rehab. That’s what it is. He’s been in – wherever, Jacksonville, wherever, Florida, Pensacola – and that’s tough. His family has been going back and forth. But he’s made the commitment and he’s been great.”
Paul Pierce on Rondo’s presence being a positive on the bench: “Definitely. It’s good to get him around the guys, to see some of his new teammates. Who knows – a lot of these guys might be here for him next year. It’s good for him to get acquainted with them. He’s done his surgery, he seems to be in good spirits, so its good to see him.”
Avery Bradley on Rondo: “First of all, it was just good seeing him. I haven’t seen him in a while. But having him there on the bench with us felt good. Felt like we had our captain back, so it was a good feeling to see him.”
Jeff Green on seeing Rondo: “It was fun, it was good to see him. We haven’t seen him since he had the surgery, so it was good to see him. I’m glad he’s doing well. You just wish he was on the court, but it was good. I think it was a big emotional boost for us to have him on the bench with us.”
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