Rondo showed up in Vegas and hung out with the players on the Celtics' Summer League entry there. He joined in the huddles and sat behind the bench and cracked jokes with the coaches. He even added some input on the plays in the huddles.
Rajon Rondo here again. He's been pulling individual Celts aside to give advice during some timeouts.
— Steve Bulpett (@SteveBHoop) July 22, 2012
Here is Coach Tyronn Lue's take on Rondo's presence on the bench:
"It was good for Rondo to come in and support the young guys. Guys have been playing hard, playing great, for him to come around & encourage guys, speaking up at halftime & time outs, it’s good for them.”
And here is Dionte Christmas' take on Rondo's presence and input:
"Getting to meet Rondo the last few days was cool. I learned a lot just listening to him talk. He’s really a coach on and off the court. He’s just sitting there coaching me and telling me things to do and where to put guys on the floor and how to tell guys where to go. Even though me and Rondo are probably around the same age, he’s very experienced in this game and he’s one of the best defensive point guards in the NBA. It’s great to get things from him and for him to come and show support and take the time to sit down with me and the guys, it was great."
Rondo's presence in Vegas shows that the Celtics are clearly his team now. He is taking ownership and showing leadership in meeting the young guys and teaching them. He saw potential in Dionte Christmas and took it on himself to give pointers and help him improve. Rondo showed by not just attending the games, but taking a hands on approach that the Celtics' success means something to him and he is going to do what it takes to make the team successful.
I did not choose to be a leader or not. I must be one for my team. Every day, I get up telling myself I want to be better. I worked hard to get to this point and I continue to work hard.
As I said earlier, I have matured a lot and my game has also. I think I am one of the best playmakers in the League. I think I'm the best point guard in the League
Rondo is not just the point guard on the Celtics, he is the leader. He was the only one of the core players to make an appearance in Vegas and his presence there, and his work with the players, showed that he has indeed matured and that he has taken the mantle of leadership on the team. It's Rondo's team now, and I think it's in very good hands.
This is a great blog I added this site to my tags ...I am a celtics geek true and through you have a great handle on the team ...Celts look good I want one more defensively big but they have replaced ray in my mind with lee ...lets face it ray couldn't cover on d anymore...Christmas is great insurance at the 2....will lasme make the team ...I love his energy and he was one of the last guys cut last year..I will miss the steamer...he really gave the Celts what they needed last year. ...keith out
Glad to have you here Keith and thanks for adding us to your tags. I agree on Ray's defense. Lasme has already signed a big contract overseas. He played very well for the Red Claws last season but decided to take the money overseas. I'll miss Stiemsma too. I wish they could have brought him back. Please comment often. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on the team.