Rajon Rondo

Rondo says this Celtics team more talented than 2008


There is a whole lot of optimism in Boston about this Celtics team.

Because they made a run all the way to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals, then brought back Kevin Garnett (who played fantastically in the playoffs), then got deeper and better with the addition of guys like Jason Terry and Courtney Lee.

How much optimism? Check out this quote from Rajon Rondo, via CSNNE.com.

“I believe this team is more talented than that team,” Rondo said. “But the key to the 2008 team is that everyone bought into the system….

“Guys probably won’t play their normal amount of minutes that they have in the past because we’re such a talented team.”

That 2008 NBA championship team had Kevin Garnett playing at a consistently higher level than today’s KG (but he can turn it on for stretches), it had Ray Allen, James Posey and Kendrick Perkins scowling in the paint. But the 2012-13 team has a better Rajon Rondo, and more depth with Terry and Lee and Jeff Green.

If KG doesn’t slide backwards too far and Paul Pierce continues to play at the same level, this year’s Celtics may be better. The problem: The mountain between them and an NBA title this year is much harder to climb and much steeper. They could be better and still not reach their goal.

PBT Extra: How did Thunder, Pacers move up in PBT Power Rankings?

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As they do every Monday during the season, the PBT Power Rankings came out and while the top three remained the same there were some climbers.

Specifically, the Thunder at No. 4 and the Pacers at No. 5.

Why they are there is the latest PBT Extra topic with Jenna Corrado. The simple answer is they are both excellent teams. Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, and Paul George are all playing like Top 10 players.

PBT Podcast: We’re back talking Kobe, 76ers, Warriors, Pistons, more

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The ProBasketballTalk NBA podcast is back.

Sure we’re a month into the season, but we’re going to get this podcast rolling again and you can expect us on each Monday and Thursday, with a variety of guests talking everything around the NBA.

Today NBC’s own Dan Feldman joins Kurt Helin to talk Kobe Bryant‘s retirement announcement, and what that means both for the Lakers going forward this season and beyond, but also what that could mean for Byron Scott’s future as the Lakers’ coach.

We also delve into the “showdown” between the Lakers and Sixers on Thursday, talk about the job Brett Brown is doing there as coach (a good one), we talk some Warriors, some Draymond Green, Pistons, Spurs and Pacers to round it all out.

Listen to the podcast below or you can listen and subscribe via iTunes.


Sacramento’s DeMarcus Cousins probable to play against Dallas Monday

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It’s this simple: The Sacramento Kings are 5-5 when DeMarcus Cousins plays this season, 1-7 when he sits. (And that win number is a big misleading, they looked like they would have beaten Charlotte with him, but when he left with back pain they lost, they could easily be 6-4 with him.)

So it’s good news that Cousins is expected to return to the Sacramento lineup Monday night. Well not good for Rick Carlisle and the Mavericks, but good for the Kings, as reported by James Ham at CSNBayArea,com.

This season Cousins is averaging 27.9 points and 11.2 rebounds a game, he has a true shooting percentage above the league average (56.3 percent for Cousins) and he has a PER of 27.1 which is sixth best in the league.

Combine him with the numbers Rajon Rondo has put up lately the Kings become much more dangerous. They’d be even scarier if everyone stayed healthy and George Karl would settle on a lineup.

PBT Extra: Kobe Bryant understands now is time to walk away

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It was expected Kobe Bryant would retire at the end of this season.

It was not expected Kobe would make that official on Nov. 29 — it’s caught the media at Staples Center Sunday (of which I was one) and the fans by surprise.

In this PBT Extra, I talk with Jenna Corrado about the mood inside Staples Center Sunday.

More importantly, I discuss the sense I got that Kobe understands it’s time to walk away, and he is at peace with that.