Lakers guard Rajon Rondo talks about his appreciativeness for Kevin Garnett
Los Angeles Lakers point guard Rajon Rondo talks about his appreciativeness for former teammate Kevin Garnett’s game and leadership. Rondo and Garnett won their first and only championship together with the Boston Celtics during their successful title run in 2008.
Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated wrote about Rondo’s up-and-down career, including his words of appreciation for Garnett’s valuable role in his basketball career.
“KG was the biggest influence in the game for me. He taught me how to be a professional. He said I would be an All-Star one day. He told me to always believe in myself and have that edge. I actually told that to Jimmy Butler. We had dinner, and I told him that KG once told me that what makes him great is he is part a–h— and he doesn’t take s— from anyone.”
The 6-foot-1 flamboyant guard played an all-important role in defeating the Kobe Bryant-led Lakers in the 2008 Finals. With Boston’s own version of the Big 3 already established in the hierarchy of the greatest players in the league, Rondo was still learning the ropes and he had Garnett as his mentor.
“If I didn’t get connected with Kevin, I don’t know where I would be in the league. I was in the deal to Minnesota in 2007. There were seven players. I saw my name on the ticker on the screen and said, ‘S—, it’s over.’ And that particular time I was ready to get out of Boston anyway because it was a miserable season. We lost 18 straight. I was playing behind two guys as the third-string point guard. I was ready to move on to a new chapter. I come to find out, he told the Celtics that he wanted me there. I’m sure [Celtics president] Danny Ainge loved me, but I think KG had a lot to do with me staying as a Celtic.”
It turned out that Rondo was almost traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves as part of the deal that sent KG to Boston. Luckily for him, Garnett knew that Rondo is bound to be a special player even before Rajon realized it himself.