Rajon Rondo upset that him sitting away from Lakers bench got so much attention


Rajon Rondo has said that sitting in seats near the Los Angeles Lakers bench — but not directly on the Lakers bench — was not a big deal.


The Lakers lost to the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday night, their fourth dropped game in a row. LA is in a tailspin and is unlikely to make the playoffs, and now LeBron James is apparently going to be on a minutes restriction the rest of the year.

From a news perspective, the act of Rondo sitting not on the Lakers bench is relevant. If this is something that he does with frequency, it’s not something that’s been reported at length before. Plus, in the context of where the Lakers are in the standings — and with Rondo being one of the veterans on the team meant to lead — his physical distance told a visual story about what’s happening with Los Angeles right now.

Of course, we’ve seen NBA players get upset about how they are covered in the media and what they deem to be important. Kyrie Irving has had a rough go of it lately, and Rondo was no different. After stories about Rondo published, the veteran point guard took to his Instagram to say that people were trying to gaslight him.

More pointedly, Rondo said that James passing Michael Jordan on the all-time scoring list was the real story.

Via IG:

There are two things to unpack here. First, nobody said that you can’t have two stories on the same night. It’s completely fair to say that the two stories on Wednesday were:

  1. LeBron passing Jordan
  2. Rondo sitting away from the Lakers bench as a kind of summation of this Los Angeles season

Second, it’s not as though the media didn’t talk about James passing Jordan. That was a major story, one that trended on Twitter and made its way across every major NBA outlet. Rondo acting as though people did not pay their due respect to LeBron does not mean that’s what happened.

But this is an era where any bozo can just throw their hands up and say “fake news!” this kind of thing gains traction. It doesn’t mean that, in the eyes of the universe, anything is more true or less true, but it can sway public opinion nonetheless.

Rondo isn’t a trained journalist, so his determination of what’s newsworthy, what should be covered as top priority, and what’s a non-story isn’t an expert opinion. He has the right to be upset that his seating arrangements got picked up, and that he’s facing heat for it. But to act as though news outlets aren’t doing their due diligence is an argument made in bad faith. That’s disappointing to hear from a brilliant mind like Rondo.

It must be frustrating to not be able to craft a narrative around yourself when every NBA player is now a brand. But the spotlight is bright for a reason, and the reality is that Rondo sitting away from his bench is weird no matter the explanation — even on a historic night for LeBron.

Clippers stun Warriors by forcing rare Game 6

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The Warriors feel inevitable.

So, when the Clippers let a 15-point second-half lead dwindle away in the final minutes, the game and series appeared over.

Instead, Lou Williams responded with a personal 8-0 – including a four-point play – run that sparked L.A. to a 129-121 Game 5 win Wednesday. The last two teams to lose a home Game 5 while leading a series 3-1:

  • 2019 Warriors vs. Clippers
  • 2016 Warriors vs. Cavaliers

Golden State will try to avoid any more comparisons to those 2016 NBA Finals in Game 6 Friday. The Warriors have won both their games in L.A. in this series, but have dropped two in Oakland – more home losses than they had the previous two postseasons combined.

The Rockets took care of business earlier in the night, but Golden State didn’t clinch its place in the anticipated rematch. The Clippers just aren’t making it easy.

“It’s a little mix of arrogance and just hard work,” said Williams, who scored 33 points and dished 10 assists. “We have a lot of young guys. We have a lot of veterans, guys that want to prove their names. We were wrote off early on in the year, people saying we weren’t a good team. We take all of those things. We digest it, and we try to make as much as we can out of it. So, it’s shown in this series.”

These Clippers have such an awesome identity.

They easily could have cherished their 31-point comeback in Game 2 as their moment of the series. But they kept fighting.

Patrick Beverley (17 points, 14 rebounds and four assists) was everywhere. Montrezl Harrell (24 points on 11-of-14 shooting with a clutch block) controlled the paint. Danilo Gallinari (26 points) got rolling after a couple off games.

L.A. has already won more games (two) than anyone except Houston (which won three in last year’s Western conference finals) in a series against the Warriors since they added Kevin Durant.

Durant scored 45 tonight, but Golden State turned up its defensive intensity too late.

“Build from this game? This game sucked. We lost,” Klay Thompson said. “Let’s go win Friday. Let’s win big. Let’s freaking win by 30 like we’re capable of.”

Rockets set up rematch with Warriors

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Bring on the Warriors.

The Rockets did their part to set up a highly anticipated rematch by dispatching the Jazz 100-93 in Game 5 Wednesday. With a 4-1 series victory over Utah, Houston enters the second round to face the winner of Warriors-Clippers. Golden State leads 3-1 entering its own Game 5 tonight.

Houston pushed these Warriors harder than anyone has, falling just short in last year’s seven-game Western Conference finals. James Harden said he thinks about losing Games 6 and 7 every day.

Will the Rockets supplant Golden State this year?

Harden is better. Chris Paul is healthy. The Warriors – their veterans a year older, Kevin Durant‘s impending free agency causing more drama – look somewhat vulnerable.

But Golden State is still favored in the second-round series before even winning its first-round series. The Warriors have historic top-end talent, and that usually wins out in the playoffs.

It did for the Rockets against the Jazz.

Harden (26 points, six rebounds, six assists, four blocks and three steals) and Paul (15 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals) weren’t great tonight. But they gave Houston enough considering Utah’s best player was Royce O'Neale (18 points on 8-of-13 shooting).

Donovan Mitchell (12 points on 4-of-22 shooting, including 0-for-9 on 3-pointers, with only one assist and five turnovers) had an awful game I doubt he’ll forget. His competitiveness and self-awareness are so impressive. I bet this only fuels him.

The Rockets are ready now.

They’ve won 24 of their last 29 games, going back to the regular season. They like to play a high-scoring style, but they’re versatile enough to adjust. P.J. Tucker and Clint Capela keyed a strong defensive performance tonight.

Houston probably won’t beat Golden State. But the Rockets have the opportunity they’ve desired for the last 332 days.

PBT Podcast: Looking ahead at the NBA playoffs second round

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Boston vs. Milwaukee. Philadelphia vs. Toronto. Houston vs. Golden State.

The first round of the NBA playoffs had plenty of emotion — just ask Damian Lillard and Russell Westbrook — but it was short, with very possibly only one series going at least six games.

The second round? That’s not going to be so quick, and it is filled with even matchups that present a lot of questions.

Is this the Rockets’ year? They have the formula, can they execute it? The Bucks were the best team in the regular season, but can they carry that elite level into the second round against Boston? Is Toronto the team to beat?

Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports/Real GM/Celticsblog to look ahead at the second round, and even talk a little about what is next for Oklahoma City.

As always, you can check out the podcast below, listen and subscribe via iTunes at, subscribe via the fantastic Stitcher app, check us out on Google play, or check out the NBC Sports Podcast homepage and archive at Art19.

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Sebastian Telfair convicted on gun charge, faces up to 15 years in prison

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Sebastian Telfair – a high school phenom from Coney Island, N.Y. – was the No. 13 pick in the 2004 NBA draft. He never lived up to the hype, but he still stuck in the NBA for 10 seasons, with the Trail Blazers, Timberwolves, Suns, Celtics, Clippers, Thunder, Raptors and Cavaliers.

He got arrested in 2017 for gun crimes and just his lost his trial.


Sebastian Telfair has been convicted of possessing a firearm … and could be sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Don’t assume Telfair will get the maximum sentence, but this is a serious conviction and will likely carry a serious sentence.