Boston Celtics Clear Winners of Rajon Rondo Deal


The deal between the Boston Celtics and Dallas Mavericks went like this: the Celtics gave Rajon Rondo to the Mavs and in return, received Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson and draft picks. At the time, the initial reaction was Rondo would be the final piece in the Mavs championship run. For the Celtics, the initial reaction was that they’d trade off most of the players and completely tank.

But that’s not what happened.

Since the Rondo deal was done, the Mavericks have fallen and are down 2-0 to the Houston Rockets in their series. They’ve had nothing but problems since Rondo’s arrival and has Head Coach Rick Carlisle sitting Rondo in the fourth quarter during playoff games. The playoffs are showing Rondo’s true colors: lack of effort during crunch time.

“No I don’t”-Rick Carlisle

When asked if Rondo will ever be a Maverick again, Carlisle’s response was a definitive “No I don’t”. Rumor has it that in the offseason, Rondo will probably sign with either the New York Knicks or the Los Angeles Lakers, but it won’t be for the amount of money he wants.

Apr 21, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle wipes his head after a foul was called against the Mavericks while playing the Houston Rockets in the first half in game two of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Since Rondo’s problems in Boston and debacle in Dallas, on ESPN’s First Take, Stephen A. Smith went on a rant about Rondo saying that he’s cost himself millions of dollars, which is true. But it seems as if Smith has forgotten one thing: the Lakers and Knicks will overpay for Rondo. For them, especially the Knicks, it’s whatever gains press and sells tickets.

If Rondo and Carmelo Anthony teamed up in New York, it would be amazing to see how bad a team could be: the two most self-centered players in the league teaming up for one big train wreck.

February 15, 2015; New York, NY, USA; Eastern Conference forward Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks (7) smiles during the second half of the 2015 NBA All-Star Game at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Since the Rondo deal for the Celtics, they’ve went in the exact opposite direction: they went from being a supposed “tank team” to a playoff contender. They had the 4th best record in the league since the All Star Break and Crowder has become a team leader , fan favorite and has played a huge role in the Celtics playoff appearance.

When Rondo was with the Celtics, the team revolved around him. Since his departure, the Celt’s have taken a more “team” approach, helping them become one of the most lovable teams in the league.

More from Boston Celtics

Let’s face it: the Celtics are more than likely going to lose their series with the Cavs. But so are the Mavericks. So in theory, the Mavericks and Celtics went the same distance, one with Rondo and one without. If the Celtics had kept Rondo, they most certainly would not be in the playoffs right now.

Apr 21, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Boston Celtics forward Jae Crowder (99) defends Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) in the fourth quarter in game two of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

I’m starting to compare the Rondo deal with the Joe Thornton deal for the Boston Bruins. At the time, Bruins General Manager Mike O’Connell had traded away superstar Thornton for three mediocre players that had no effect on the future Stanley Cup win in 2011.

But after the B’s won the Cup in 2011, O’Connell was asked why he ever traded away Joe Thornton which was ultimately the reason O’Connell lost his job. His answer made a lot of sense: he said that he didn’t see the team ever winning a Stanley Cup with him.

Without Thornton, the Bruins have made the playoffs almost every year since with two Cup appearances to show for it. The Sharks: a great regular season team with no playoff success to show for it.

Does this mean the Celtics are going to win a championship in the years to come? Possibly yes. But does it also mean that whatever team Rondo goes to will never win a championship? In my opinion, absolutely yes.

So, will the loss of Rondo be the beginning of deep playoff runs by the Celtics? Will Rondo ever win another Championship or is this the beginning of the end for him?