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Garnett: Rajon Rondo is playing hurt

Mar 17, 2011, 10:56 AM EDT

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Rajon Rondo was 0-2 shooting with no points Wednesday night, the latest bad line in a slump that has been going on for a couple of weeks. Rondo looks slow and banged up.

Kevin Garnett stood up for Rondo, saying he is doing all he can right now, as reported by WEEI:

“Rondo’s playing hurt,” said Garnett. “He’s hurting. He’s giving us everything he has. He’s grinding. He’s playing countless minutes for us, and he’s not playing like a washed-up guy.”

We’re not talking a major injury here, we’re talking the bumps and bruises that come with an NBA season — but because of the lack of a quality point guard behind him, Rondo has played extra minutes and not had the chance to rest. The load is wearing on him.

That happens during the season, but the timing of it a month out from the playoffs has to be concerning to Celtics fans. They have a series of road trips with a lot of games ahead, and Boston is locked in a close battle with Chicago and Miami for home court in the East. They can’t really afford to rest Rondo too much, even though they need to.

Which is to say, Doc Rivers has some challenges and hard choices ahead of him getting this team ready for the playoffs.

  1. loungefly74 - Mar 17, 2011 at 12:57 PM

    rondo is the engine that runs the Celtic’s offense. If he is not ready by playoff time, the C’s take a huge step back…okay being captain obvious here but my point is the C’s go as far as rondo takes them.
    i’m a Laker fan so i know how dangerous he could be…

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 17, 2011 at 6:35 PM

      Celtics are soft in the middle with Perkins in Oak City, Lakers may have to hope on not meeting up with them, they looked like monsters in the middle last night, but when you have the Mamba you don’t have to worry too much but I think they could cause some problems for teams just like the lakers do in the middle.

      brooklyn laker fan

  2. havlicekstoletheball - Mar 17, 2011 at 5:28 PM

    Oh, what a load of crap. Rondo is averaging 37 minutes a game. He just turned 25. Guys like Norm Van Lier and Nate Archibald and JoJo White routinely averaged 40+, season after season.

    Rondo may be banged up, but so is every other full-time player in the league. Rondo’s problem is that he can’t make 2 out of ten open 16 footers, so the defenses drop off and dare him to shoot. And when he does take it to the basket, they kill him because they know he is an abysmal free throw shooter.

    Give someone like Steve Nash or Tony Parker the wide-open looks that Rondo gets, and they would average 35 points a game. Rondo’s game is badly flawed, and they are flaws that could be corrected with hard work, which he seems not willing to do. If he’d become a respectable shooter and a good free throw shooter, the game would be much easier for him.

    • passerby23 - Mar 17, 2011 at 5:43 PM

      Sagging off Rondo and daring him to shoot wasn’t a problem before the slump, or in previous seasons. The Celtics are a proud team, a lot of guys fight things they don’t always publicize. We don’t really know what he’s battling.

      Delonte West is back and Arroyo can give them some minutes, so maybe that can spell him an extra 5-10 minutes a night. Would’ve been nice to have a few game cushion to work with, but avoiding a 2 or 3 seed at all costs is imperative.

      • havlicekstoletheball - Mar 17, 2011 at 7:27 PM

        @passerby23

        Sagging off Rondo has been the problem for the last couple of years. When the C’s offense stagnates, check and see where Rondo’s man is playing. He is either doubling down on a post player or has his arm in the passing lane to the cutter (Pierce or Allen) going to the bucket. That is precisely the time he has to make the defense pay.

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 17, 2011 at 6:38 PM

      you are correct, but he does have a knack for dishin the rock, he averages 10 dimes……

      but you are right, he has to stick that 16 footer to keep them honest

  3. bceltics1010 - Mar 17, 2011 at 6:53 PM

    Rondo has never been a shooter, unlike parker and others, his job is to set things up, find the right guy to pass it too, and let the magic unfold. He probably is all sore and banged up, seeing how we got rid of Nate and West was injured, we really don’t have any other options, that know the plays. Things are looming up, and players are getting better. GO CELTICS!

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