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Rajon Rondo unsurprisingly is not concerned with the Heat

Jul 25, 2010, 11:37 AM EDT

The defining characteristic of the Boston Celtics is their defense. Their second defining characteristic is arrogance. This isn’t a bad thing. The Celtics, like all great teams, pride themselves on being the team they consider the best. All season long they kept the same mantra: the only team that can beat them is themselves. This was entirely accurate until they faced the Lakers, where that list became two teams. Themselves, and the Lakers.

So naturally, with the Heat being considered instant contenders for the title, someone decided to ask Rajon Rondo, the brashest of the brash, what he thought of the Heat while he’s out in Vegas practicing for Team USA.

Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports caught up with Rondo and here’s what he had to say:

“They should be good, but they ain’t done nothing yet,” Rondo said after
a recent practice during Team USA’s minicamp. “They ain’t done
nothing.”

This is a true statement. The Heat in its current incarnation has literally never done anything, having not practiced or even been in the same room with each other yet.

But there’s more!

“What is there to be nervous for?” he said. “I’m worried about L.A.
That’s the team we need to beat. Miami looks really good on paper, and
I’m sure they’re going to be really good. But they still have to come
together as a team. I’m not saying they won’t, but who knows if those
guys can jell?

“Our biggest opponent each night is ourselves – that’s how I look at
it. Not to be cocky or anything, but that’s how we honestly feel. We are
the defending [Eastern] champs. Once the first game of the regular
season starts, that’s irrelevant. But we are going to go into training
camp looking to get back to the Finals and win it.”

Besides the fact that I would assume the verb would be ‘gel’ there, it’s pretty clear Rondo’s not a fan of the idea that a team that is made up of three superstars can just come together, use their talents, and win a championship based on talent and desire of elite players. You know, the exact same thing the Celtics did in 2008.

One more, for the road:

“Things aren’t going to go each guy’s particular way. It’s going to be about how they handle it as gentlemen.”

You know, gentlemen. Like punching players in the face and throwing them into tables. That kind of gentleman. Rondo’s a great competitor and a terrific player. I just found it funny that a player often considered as brash as he is, by both opposing players and even his own coaching staff would talk about being a gentleman.

  1. Aqzi - Jul 25, 2010 at 1:59 PM

    The “brashest of the brash” title might have to permanently belong to KG.

  2. Salty - Jul 25, 2010 at 2:06 PM

    The title game will be between the Lakers and the Celtics. As it should be.

  3. planktonDisciple - Jul 25, 2010 at 2:09 PM

    Yeah right, paint Rondo like he’s some kind of thug, when he’s the consummate team player, the glue holding the team together.
    Yeah you can call Garnett, Allen and Pierce “elite” players, maybe in 2005. They are very good players now, and they play a a completely unselfish team concept.
    The Heat have three 1st team all stars in the PRIME of their careers. When Rondo speaks of things not always going your way, he is talking about between teammates while playing. Not everyone can dictate the flow, get the shots they want etc. Rondo means not to bicker too much or cop attitudes with teammates. Maybe not the exact meaning of the word “gentlemen”, but I suspect you knew that and didn’t care.
    Big new! Another player, coach, owner, reporter, talking head says,”Miami Hasn’t Done Anything Yet”.
    Oh my I feel like blogging.

  4. Anthony - Jul 25, 2010 at 2:54 PM

    Both Wade and Lebron are used to being the ones who dictate the flow of a game. Neither are spot up shooters, they are both guys who drive and dish or take it to the hoop. Also they will have zero defense in the paint, teams with some size will give them trouble because no one is scared of Bosh on the defensive end of the court. Still they will win 65 games or more because most of the rest of the league sucks. They will only feel relief if they win a title, being that they assembled an all-star team in the most fixed free agency of all time. David Stern should feel proud.

  5. Chris Simoneau - Jul 25, 2010 at 2:58 PM

    keep your opinions to yourself, matt. Report the news. I got sick of pFt because of Florio’s biased opinion. Lets not start what could be a great site with you trying to be a carbon copy. This isnt the same thing the Celtics did 3 years ago either, boss. KG, Ray and Paul were all aged when they came together, and it was done through trades, so the Celtics actually had to give up players, not buy out the entire roster and start buying everyone. For all the talking heads out there saying the Celtics could be in trouble- well, I hate to break it to you, but they will be just as good next year as they have been the last 3 years. People forget that Big Baby missed about 40 games last year. Add Jermaine O’Neal, and whoever else they steal(Josh Howard?) and this team is still scary good.

  6. T-Will - Jul 25, 2010 at 3:03 PM

    Rhondo is entitled to his opinion, as we all are. My opinion is: because he cant make a consistant jump shot, regardless of the distance, he is the reason they lost the finals! The lakers allowed him to shoot, without regard. Which gave them a 5 on 4 advantage, so the Lakers were able to shut down the other geriatric Celtic players. I wanted them to beat the Lakers but the truth is the truth! Rhondo’s jump shot is BROKE ! That is often called ” self-checked “.
    Instead of running his mouth, Rhondo should be shooting a 1000 jump shots a day until he can make atleast 50 percent of them. Otherwise he should lose his position to Nate Robinson. Nate is as explosive, he can get to the basket, because he is quick he can defend and most of all ….he can make a shot if someone is defending him and especially if he is left alone…which fat mouth Rhondo can’t !!!!! Just my opinion.

  7. randy - Jul 25, 2010 at 3:06 PM

    Who cares what Rondo says or thinks? This is the same arrogant squirt the Celtics were thinking about trading last year. I doubt many teams are quaking at the thought of playing against the Celtics. The former big three are past their prime and the Heat, Bulls and Magic will field better teams. I would love to see a Heat-Celtic or Bulls-Celtic series in the eastern finals. The Lakers should win the west with competition from the Suns, Thunder, Jazz, Rockets, and maybe a final gasp from Timmy and the Spurs. Don’t hold your breath for a Laker-Celtic rematch.

  8. AK84 - Jul 25, 2010 at 3:18 PM

    Matt,
    Your content is usually great but the quality of writing often leaves a lot to be desired.
    AK

  9. Tony - Jul 25, 2010 at 3:42 PM

    Hey Anthony, in case you dont know it, Wade and LeBron are two of the best defenders in the leaque,and shot blockers! Miller and Haslem are also two of the best defenders. Anthony is one of the best shot blockers! You better get some youth because the Heat will run Boston ragged!

  10. planktonDisciple - Jul 25, 2010 at 4:00 PM

    Rondo is NOT the reason they lost in the Finals. He shot .454 avging 6.3 rebounds and 7.6 boards per game. The Lakers clamped down, the Celts were in it to the last minute and Lakers prevailed.
    Contrast this: Kobe shot .405 avging 8 boards and 3.9 assists.
    The entire series was played by people who most of the time couldn’t hit the side of a barn.
    And they weren’t looking to trade Rondo last year. They were considering offers for Ray Allen. The year before that they considered trading Rondo, but after his performance in the 2009 playoffs, they decided to sign him to a big long term contract.
    The Celtics will get more layups by playing half court basketball then the heat will get by running.

  11. empire wizard - Jul 25, 2010 at 4:24 PM

    with few exceptions, “DEFENSE” wins ball games. From “DEFENSE” comes offense. we saw it in 2010 and 2008. It will take a lot of co-operation between three superstars to excell at a level to win consistently right away. The question that should be asked. ” will the “HEAT” be cooled by some hot new comer by the time it takes to blend.

  12. Chris Simoneau - Jul 25, 2010 at 4:29 PM

    Tony,
    What league are you watching? You are crazy. Lebron and Wade, they make PLAYS on defense, but they both gamble on D constantly.Wade is s shot blocker? Really? Tony, i’m sorry, you have no idea what you are talking about. Mike Miller plays defense now?? Since when?Haslem??? Come on Tony. Yes, the Heat are super talented with the new Bought 3, but to think they are just going to overtake Boston and Orlando, well, not the case. Chris Bosh is a HORRIBLE defender, and he might be the most overrated player in the game. If he is really that great, why has Toronto been so bad? Great big men make a difference in winning(KG, SHAQ, DUNCAN,), good big men(WEBBER, EWING, MALONE) put up good numbers and disappear when you need them. That is Bosh. He is good, not great, and no matter how great your 1,2, and 3 might be, you need a 4 or 5 that can man up and play defense when needed. Miami is going to struggle against teams with good bigs(LAL,BOS,CHI,ORL). Mark my words Tony, the Heat wont be winning until they have a scary low post presence, and I am not talking about a guy who only plays offense.

  13. JD - Jul 25, 2010 at 5:04 PM

    Until the Miami Heat win something tangible like an Eastern Conference championship or an NBA Finals trophy, they are “paper champions” at best. One thing is certain though, this upcoming NBA season will have a very interesting Eastern Conference race.

  14. Viper160 - Jul 25, 2010 at 5:17 PM

    Rhondo’s comments are on target, the 3 Heat players look good on paper what about their supporting cast, a group of over the hill and castaways. Can DWade and LBJ handle not having the ball always in their hands? Will the rest of the league just fold up for the season and give the trophy to Miami-NO!. Rhondo, at least had the stones to voice what the rest of the league players are all thinking. The Heat have not done anything other than PR , and they did this poorly, and continue to do it poorly. The rest of the league did not just stop working to improve their rosters, something that the pontificators seem to always overlook.

  15. cuzzenbud - Jul 25, 2010 at 5:53 PM

    Sounds like the author of this article has jumped on the Heat bandwagon.

  16. Polo From Florida - Jul 25, 2010 at 5:54 PM

    Free agent= free to sign you with any team you like. while Ray Allen and KG were trade to the Celtics. Someone has to pck up their
    contract it sure was not me. The Celtics still paid to get these guys together.So they were getting old when they joing forces. That was their decision. Ray and KG hould have realized they getting nowhere with their former teams. Thank god they did not until they were all washed up. Fot so many Lebron haters out there. He should have stayed in Cleveland and played with a bunch
    of no name players that will not help him to the top. All they have been doing is watching him play. It was always easy to beat Cleveland, Zone defense primarily on Lebron and quick rotation to the the shooters. they never had a player that can create his own shot.Now he does. If they double Lebron that means wade is open.He can shoot,drive to the basket or drive and kick out to another open shooter.You gonna see a lot of scrambling on defense for the opposite team.Miami should have a ton of open shots. Zone defense opens alot of opportunities. It going to be fun to watch after a few minor adjustments. My only concern is about defense.Go Heat.

  17. David Yocum - Jul 25, 2010 at 6:36 PM

    “They ain’t done nothing.”
    With some of your money…. LEARN TO SPEAK ENGLISH!!

  18. James - Jul 25, 2010 at 8:19 PM

    I do understand that some you out there may not want to here this but James, Wade, and Bosh have played together before on the same team and have been very successful at it. Remember how they performed together in the 2008 USA Olympic team?
    “Meanwhile, Greece dropped to 1-2 and must beat Angola and China to finish third in this group. Kobe Bryant and Chris Bosh paced the winners with 18 points apiece. Dwayne Wade added 17 while Lebron James had 13 for the United States.”
    This was a game in which the USA won 92-62 against Greece.
    Do you think this is an even likely of this type of success when you consider they will be playing together for at least 85 games this year?

  19. PDubs - Jul 25, 2010 at 8:19 PM

    I didnt know rondo was getting paid to teach english class, DY.

  20. SpeakaEnglish - Jul 25, 2010 at 9:00 PM

    it actually is jell, not gel. this same issue came up recently on another blog i read. feel free to google it if you dont believe me (i think it has something to do with jelly).

  21. luffy - Jul 25, 2010 at 9:23 PM

    The US team won because of a man named Kobe Bryant and not LBJ, Wade or Bosh. Leave Kidd, Kobe, Melo, Amare and Howard and there you go, US team wins, no Wade, LBJ or Bosh. I like DWade though, he has heart unlike LBJ…
    Yes, The Celts did this, adding up 3 superstars but that Celtic team had a good Roster, Bench and Coach unlike Miami now…
    2011 Finals – Lakers 3peat in 6 games over Celtics/Bulls

  22. luffy - Jul 25, 2010 at 9:30 PM

    Ok, you’re so good at English, you’re better than Rondo that all you do now is join forums while Rondo earns Millions. Dumbass comment, stay on the topic please…

  23. kimmer - Jul 25, 2010 at 9:53 PM

    Do the Heat have a legitimate big man and a backup center for when he needs a rest? And how about a power forward to help the big man with rebounds; both offensive AND defensive boards? That is what a championship team needs. During a playoff game, you can usually tell who is going to win by who controls the boards. The Bulls had Rodman, the big Aussie and Horace Grant. Without them, they would not have done what they did. And I mean even with Jordan, Pippen, Kerr, the hot shooting slovakian dude, and the rest; they STILL needed to control the BOARDS!! Can the Heat do that?

  24. DK - Jul 25, 2010 at 9:59 PM

    I guess Rondo is right when he said that Heat haven’t achieved and/or proved any thing at this stage. Team sport with super stars and very talented bunch is all about the team environment and how players get on with each other and be ready to not force individual success at the cost of team success.

  25. Jim - Jul 25, 2010 at 10:06 PM

    Okay. Not a Boston or LA fan. That said, Rondo is right. It takes talent to win a championship but you “also” need chemistry. No offense to Miami fans but…Miami basically dumped their whole roster and are making an attempt to literally “buy” a championship. Boston built their roster over time and was decision based. Everyone knows this including the players on the teams they will be going against next season. Miami’s big 2 1/2 might as well paint dart boards on their chests. Everyone will bring their “A” game against them. They could possibly do it but will have to deal with Orlando, then Boston,possibly Chicago, and probably LA. If you are an NBA fan, Miami simply “Must” fail. If teams based in nice locations with a generous tax advantage can garnish the superstars like this, it will automatically make it impossible for many teams to compete. This whole scenario might destroy the NBA. I haven’t brought up what Lebron did and how he’s going to be received around the country.

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