From A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Boston:
WALTHAM — If only Friday’s game against Phoenix were a playoff battle with the series knotted up at 2-2.
Under those circumstances, Rajon Rondo said his sore right wrist wouldn’t prevent him from playing.
Instead, it’s a regular-season game, one that Rondo’s coach, Doc Rivers, anticipates being played without him.
“He’s doing all right,” Rivers said. “But I doubt if he plays. We’ll see.”
The 5-8 Celtics have been one of the NBA’s biggest disappointments so far, but Rondo has continued to play at a high level despite the team seemingly crumbling around him — Rondo is averaging a career-high 15 points per game on 51.7% shooting, which also represents a career-high mark from him. Rondo’s assist totals are down from last season, but he’s still handing out 9.4 assists per game, which is the 2nd-highest mark in the league.
VIZZINI: “So, it is down to you. And it is down to me.”
MAN IN BLACK nods and comes nearer…
MAN IN BLACK: “Perhaps an arrangement can be reached.”
VIZZINI: “There will be no arrangement…”
MAN IN BLACK: “But if there can be no arrangement, then we are at an impasse.”
That farcical scene from The Princess Bride pretty much sums up where we are with the Tristan Thompson holdout with the Cleveland Cavaliers, minus the Iocane powder. (Although that scene was a battle of wits in the movie and this process seems to lack much wit.) The Cavaliers have put a five-year, $80 million offer on the table. Thompson wants a max deal (or at least a more than has been offered), but he also doesn’t want to play for the qualifying offer and didn’t sign it. LeBron James just wants the two sides just to get it done.
Brian Windhorst of ESPN thinks LeBron could be very disappointed.
Windhorst was on the Zach Lowe podcast at Grantland (which you should be listening to anyway) and had this to say about the Thompson holdout:
“I actually believe it will probably go months. This will go well into the regular season.”
Windhorst compared it to a similar situation back in 2007 with Anderson Varejao, which eventually only broke because the then Charlotte Bobcats signed Varejao to an offer sheet. Thompson is a restricted free agent, meaning the Cavaliers can match any offer, but only Portland and Philadelphia have the cap space right now to offer him a max contract. Neither team has shown any interest in doing so.
And so we wait. And we may be waiting a while.
ProBasketballTalk’s Kurt Helin explains why he believes the Sacramento Kings have enough pieces to potentially make a run at the final playoff spot in the West.