LeBron James-Rajon Rondo’s secret to kill opponents, per Kevin Durant
Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant hopped in on ESPN+’s show Detail, where he discussed how the Los Angeles Lakers broke down the Miami Heat defense in the NBA Finals. From his observation, the duo of LeBron James and Rajon Rondo would dime a zone defense to death.
To recall, the Heat decided to play zone — a defensive package that had worked wonders for them in the playoffs. But against the Lakers who arguably had the smartest players in James and Rondo — the zone didn’t work out pretty well. As Durant observed, both James and Rondo were extremely patient — waiting for the Heat to react so they can slip in a sneaky dime.
When the Lakers acquired Rondo in 2018, fans and analysts were quickly pointed out the guard’s superior basketball IQ as his number one asset. Many were quick to surmise that James, at some possessions, could step back for a bit knowing that Rondo can orchestrate to offense by himself. And when they work together, the Lakers would be essentially unstoppable.
Rajon Rondo actually admitted to dreaming of playing with James. In an interview after they won the 2020 NBA title, Rondo shared that a thought popped into his mind after James lost to the Golden State Warriors in 2017:
“I told myself that if I was able to get with a guy like LeBron, there was no way that a team was going to be able to beat us 4 times before we beat them 4 times.”
Rondo was definitely correct in his hunch. Thanks to him and James’ basketball smarts, the Lakers are now kings of the hardcourt. As for The King, he’s making other news on a World Series focused Tuesday, as a UFC star is once again attacking the legend for reasons that are increasingly becoming less clear as time goes on.