Clippers’ Doc Rivers speaks on Pelicans’ Rajon Rondo’s 25-assist performance
Things are finally starting to look up in New Orleans. After undergoing yet another injury riddled start to this campaign, the Pelicans are starting to hit their stride and collect wins in comprehensive fashion. Their recent success, of course, always comes down to their two dominant big men Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins, who are undoubtedly the deadliest front court in the league, but lately they have been getting some exquisite help from a familiar NBA veteran.
That veteran is passing wizard Rajon Rondo, who, in their recent win against the Brooklyn Nets at home, dropped a career as well as franchise-high of 25 assists. It was extraordinary to watch as Rondo seemingly stepped into a time machine and put on a performance we hadn’t even seen from his days with the Boston Celtics.
As much as Rondo has bounced around the league since his departure from Boston, most franchise has had his services has still benefitted from his incredibly high basketball IQ, and his rare ability to make others around him better. Despite playing in some struggling and dysfunctional teams the past couple seasons, Rondo’s skillset has always been there, and he’s capable of registering high assist performances on any given night.
Before the LA Clippers began practice on Thursday afternoon, head coach Doc Rivers, who coached Rondo for seven successful seasons from 2006-2013 with the Celtics, spoke to ClutchPoints about his former point guard’s stellar performance against the Nets.
“That’s Rondo at his finest. Rondo can score, but he doesn’t really need to or want to. He likes to get everybody else involved. That’s part of his genes. What I always thought was more impressive is the other team knows he doesn’t want to shoot and he still gets his passes off. I think that’s what the untold story about Rondo is. Every night, teams knew that he wasn’t going to shoot the ball, play him for the pass, he still passes and gets it in. I would say it’s like Tom Brady. You know he’s going to pass and he still completes it and Rondo is very similar to that.”
One reporter went on to say, “You held him back”. And Rivers responded with a laugh and saying, “I did, I held him back.”
Players like Rondo have a very unique gift to find teammates for good looks. If there’s one guy who has an appreciation for the skillset of Rondo’s, it’s his 2008 NBA Championship coach in Doc Rivers.