The reports that came out last week that Rajon Rondo told the Boston Celtics he wanted out and to trade him was oddly timed — you demand trades near the deadline or at the start of the summer when teams have money to spend. By August rosters are largely locked in and big deals are hard to swing (Kevin Love not withstanding, but that had been in the works all summer). Plus you don’t have much leverage when the Celtics just drafted another point guard (Marcus Smart). Then, of course, Rondo’s people denied there was a trade request.
Either way, Celtics GM Danny Ainge is in a position with options — right now he can try to bring in another star to play alongside Rondo if that kind of deal comes up (they tried to get in the Love sweepstakes), or he can trade Rondo if the right option comes along. He just has to make his call by the trade deadline (Rondo will be a free agent next summer).
All that combined makes the report Rondo wants to start the season in Boston make the most sense, a report that comes via A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com.
Multiple league sources have repeatedly said that Rondo wants to start the season in Boston and see where things go from there. A similar sentiment has trickled out of Celtics camp, as well.
Rondo is hopeful that the team Danny Ainge is assembling around him is better than most anticipate, that they can be this season’s feel-good story not only in the East but throughout the NBA.
I’m not sure these Celtics are a surprise, unless Jeff Green (finally) or Kelly Olynyk make huge leaps. That said those two guys and players like Jared Sullinger and Smart are good trade assets if the Celtics can find someone to bring in to pair with Rondo (the Celtics have picks, too).
If not, Ainge can be patient and see what trade options come up at the deadline.
Rondo can start the season in Boston, show he is fully healthy after the ACL injury and show he is a real leader and elite point guard, then see who comes after him at the deadline.
Or, next summer he could just re-sign in Boston. Nothing is set in stone.