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Wednesday, December 10th, 2008 at 3:06 pm  |  154 responses

Don’t Hate The Player

Gary Payton is wrong about the Celtics’ PG.


by Todd Spehr

I like Rajon Rondo. I can’t help it. His odd skill set—his wild ball fakes when he gets in the paint, how he rebounds like it’s 1962, the randomly skewed stat lines—appeals to someone like me. The appeal, however, doesn’t exactly permeate to everyone.

Gary Payton, I would surmise, hasn’t exactly boarded the Rondo train. Doing the NBATV thing right now, Payton must surely be the source for some off-air yapping because when Rondo’s name came up last month, Ahmad Rashad immediately went fishing for a Rondo assessment from G.P., and well, he got it: “I respect the man’s game, I’m just saying he got put into a situation.” Payton then references coat-tail guys like M.L. Carr and John Salley. Good stuff.

(In a related note, who are we to argue? If anyone knows what it’s like to be “put in a situation” it’s G.P. He was in one in 2004 (L.A.) and also 2006 (Miami), eventually earning that elusive ring in South Florida.)

Truth be told, Rondo is more than just a guy playing alongside K.G.-Pierce-Allen. Importantly, Rondo’s a guy they trust. K.G. said on multiple occasions that “it starts with our point guard.” Yes, the defending champs who possess three guys heading straight to Springfield rely on a Gun charges22-year old with a, shall I say, less than reliable jump shot who prefers the paint to the perimeter.

You could make the case that Rondo’s development was harder because of his surroundings. There are plenty of young guys who come in with bad teams, get the necessary minutes and develop at a nice pace. For those who think Rondo’s opportunity—playing with the caliber that he is—is easy, imagine if Sebastian Telfair remained in Boston.

Playing with three All-Stars, no matter how much they sacrifice, would never be easy for a young point guard. It can’t be. Yes, it would beat the heck out of playing with misfits, but you have to win their trust, keep everyone happy, make sure everyone is getting touches, score when they’re sagging off you, and do whatever is possible to make sure they don’t get mad at you. Rondo’s options were to wilt or thrive. He chose to thrive. He’s a much-improved player.

Just how much better his team makes him, though, is a hard to determine. Remember Matt Maloney? White guy, shot threes, looked like an accountant? Anyway, he broke in Baloneywith the Rockets in ’97, played with Olajuwon-Drexler-Barkley and was a serviceable point in his first two years. But when the old dudes inevitably broke down, so did Maloney’s career. Gone, just like that. Can we be certain that isn’t Rondo?

Thankfully, I think we can.

There are some things you just can’t ignore. It was Rondo who broke open Game 6 of last year’s Finals, seemingly in many places at once, setting a tone that lasted the full 48. Last week, Rondo busted Indiana—by now you’ve surely heard—with 16, 13, and 17, but the most impressive part wasn’t that only Magic Johnson had pulled a similar triple-dip in the last 25 years, but that Rondo had achieved it roughly 113 seconds into the second half. Basketball-Reference has Rondo listed fourth in defensive rating for this season. And I just got done reading the first of what will likely be many “Rondo an All-Star?” columns. What just happened?

I’m certainly not ready to approve this All-Star talk just yet—first Calderon, then Devin Harris, now this?—but there’s no denying Rondo has arrived as a very good pro. You can live with his inconsistency, his home-versus-road disparity (see: Playoffs, 2008), and the fact he’s still raw all because of who he plays with. He gets a free pass. Call it the Robert Horry Theorem: You can play without having accountability because of your great teammates.

So now we watch. Rondo needs to step in and replace James Posey as Boston’s fourth You-can-count-on-me-for-every-playoff-game player, he needs to continue to have outings like the Pacers game where we wonder “Can he really be an All-Star in the next two years?” and he needs to keep making everyone happy. And most importantly, if he is the starting point guard on a repeat championship run, Gary Payton might be “put in a situation” where he takes note of Rondo’s game. Imagine that.

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  • http://www.mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Myles Brown

    “For those who think Rondo’s opportunity—playing with the caliber that he is—is easy, imagine if Sebastian Telfair remained in Boston.”

    Check and Mate. Stop hatin’, haters.

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com H to the Izzo

    “Remember Matt Maloney? White guy, shot threes, looked like an accountant?”.What a racist assumption.He could be terrible at arithmetic for all you know.
    -
    I agree on Rondo btw,he’s the type of player that will always either be vastly underappreciated or slightly over-rated.

  • witness

    nah rondo is the real deal. he can ball.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    How is Sebastian Telfair a legit argument for Rondo? Related, but there’s no connection.

  • witness

    but there are still alot of pgs who are better than him. but the main reason his stats look so good is because he knows how to play.

  • witness

    aaron brooks- no
    jordan farmar- no
    jameer nelson- no
    jj barea- no

  • witness

    chris paul- yes
    deron williams- yes
    chauncy billups- hell yea

  • witness

    its almost like the tony parker situation

  • witness

    parker cant be the franchise player because he has to have really good players around him to play really good.

  • http://www.bbaxn.com Darksaber

    as Webb put it the other night: Rooooonnnndoooooooooooooooooo! (etc, etc.)

  • http://www.mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Myles Brown

    Because they have similar skill sets and deficiencies. Because Rondo developed his shot to a respectable degree and Bassy and others of his ilk may have crumbled under that kind of pressure to produce. Because it supports the idea that you cant just plug any guard into this offense and expect the same results. He wasn’t just “put in a situation”. He’s thrived in it.

  • Todd Spehr

    Ryne, the Telfair argument is legitimate: Both he and Rondo were on the C’s at the end of 2007, and basically they could’ve parted with either. Rondo wasn’t even drafted by Boston in the first place, he fell into their arms! Quit hatin’ Ryne! Hahaha…

  • http://www.mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Myles Brown

    And what he said. Hater.

  • http://twentythreenine.blogspot.com Russ Bengtson

    Just because you were a great NBA player doesn’t make you a great—or even good—judge of NBA talent. See Jordan, Michael; Thomas, Isiah; Bird, Larry; and just about everyone else who did or didn’t play on the Dream Team.

  • http://twentythreenine.blogspot.com Russ Bengtson

    “I…LOVE…RONDO!”
    -
    *guzzles cheap scotch directly from bottle*

  • http://twentythreenine.blogspot.com Russ Bengtson

    Sometimes I wonder what happened to Matt Maloney. OK, not really.

  • Todd Spehr

    Russ, I remember a game on NBC during the lockout year where Jim Gray went through an entire story about how Maloney had to buy his own sneakers that year just to play! I mean, if that isn’t getting spit out of the bottom of the league, I don’t know what is…

  • http://idunkonthem.blogspot.com/ albie1kenobi

    GP was on the Heat when they got the ring? if he didn’t play, can he really be proud of it?

  • riggs

    ironically russ….he became an accountant.

  • http://hoops4life.com overtime

    I dont see why there is surprise about the Calederon, Harris and Rondo all-star talk…name better Eastern Point Guards? There are better shooting guards il give u that, Joe Johnson, Dwade obviously. If theres injuries id give Mike Bibby a vote too

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Rose, then Calderon, then Harris, then Mo Williams, then D.J. Augustin, then Rondo. In order.

  • SMitch forever…

    I agree with GP on Rondo. I mean we can all see that he is in a GREAT situation right now. I mean playing with KG, PP, and Ray – come on. Before the trade everyone was bashing him and saying that he couldnt play – but sure enough when you play beside guys of that caliber it is hard not to play well. I think that he thinks he is better than he actually is…and that ball fake in the paint…cant stand that.

  • whooo!

    i think a comparison to tony parker is extremeely relevant. parker came in at 19 and won multiple rings while sometimes having to be pulled in the 4th quarter for guys like speedy claxton. but in ’07 he made the jump from a guy you thought might be good because of his team to showing he’s legit. not saying rondo will be as good, but it’ll be interesting to see his development.

  • http://etceteratheblog.wordpress.com Et Cetera

    Rose? Can he play a full season first? Rondo, despite his lack of range, has to be above Rose just on experience alone. You can’t be the best at any position until you’ve played every team in the league. I don’t care what people say about how he got it, the bottom line is that Rondo has a ring. And it’s not like he sat on the bench. He was a contributor. Gary Payton needs to release the hate from his heart.

  • WhaHuh

    I cant believe someone compared Tony Parker to Rondo. A player who has been a part of “the big 3″ with 3 rings compared to the weakest starting link on a team with a “big 3″ with 1 ring(admittedly it is a great starting lineup).

    Also I would say that a Bassy and Rondo have similar weaknesses- jump shot and tentativeness. Rondo is just a much better defender

  • http://twentythreenine.blogspot.com Russ Bengtson

    Devin Harris is ahead of Jose Calderon all day long (twice on Sundays), and Chris Duhon needs to be in that discussion.

  • Jessdogg

    I predict that rondo with have the first quad-double since dave rob…hmmm?

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com/madlib Michael NZ

    Rose, Harris, Calderon, Rondo, Mo Willimas, Bibby, Duhon, Nelson. In order.

  • NBK

    Ryne you put DJ Augustin above Rose, come on you normally say sensible things but what are you thinking?

  • NBK

    Rondo**** my bad

  • NBK

    The eastern PG go as follows (how they are playing just this season alone)
    Devin Harris, Derrick Rose, Rajon Rondo, Jose Calderon, then a couple of guys are about the same Augustin, and Duhon

  • NBK

    I forgot Mo Williams he is right around Calderon

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    DJ Augustin before Rondo? Already? You jest. Harris, Rose, Calderon, Mo Williams, Rondo. I don’t care about another pg in the East. Duhon is a byproduct of Mike D’s system and he plays 73 minutes per game. Until proven otherwise, I believe that any decent pg playing in Mike D’s system can average close 10 assts a game. (the 5 that I mentioned are included, obviously)

  • ciolkstar

    There’s no way you can justify placing Augustin ahead of Rondo as an all star this season Ryne! Thats just haterism. Augustin had like 4 good games and he’s on a terrible team. Rondo plays both sides of the ball and his team looks like the most dominant force in the league two years running….Rose has been great this season, but I think he’s closer to Rondo than most would admit (ie Rose can’t shoot either) and he hasn’t really outplayed Rondo (and certainly hasn’t outplayed Devin Harris) this season.

  • NBK

    The Atlanta Hawks have not beat a winning team yet this season. Bibby is overrated. And their 6-0 start was overrated too

  • NBK

    Ciolkstar Derrick Rose has a better shot than Rondo lol it isnt close. I know Rose’s biggest problem is his jump shot but he as good a midrange shooter as you can hope for for a rookie Pg. Neither can shoot a three unless the clock is winding down though

  • NBK

    Cosign Z

  • ciolkstar

    Devin Harris, Derrick Rose, Rajon Rondo, Calderon, Chris Duhon

    And Duhon should probabaly be ahead of Calderon, you could argue that he’s been the best “pure point” in this whole group.

    Augustin isnt even in the equation.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    NBK: D.J. Augustin is the far superior point guard. He and Rose will be the two best point guards in the East for a very long time.

  • ciolkstar

    I agree that Rose’ shot is clearly better than Rondo’s but his shooting percentage is much lower. And isnt that really what counts? I just think Rose’ star power and huge highlight plays gets his game more credit than it deserves while Rondo gets the opposite. Don’t get me wrong, Rose is already probably the superior player but Rondo isnt as far behind him as some would like to make it seem.

  • Todd Spehr

    Comparing Rose and Rondo is like comparing LeBron and Melo – yeah, they may be similar builds, but they’re totally DIFFERENT players

  • NBK

    Just because Duhon’s numbers are inflated does not merit him to be looked at as better then Calderon. Thats what D’Antoni can do for a player.

  • ciolkstar

    Augustin MIGHT be the better player in the future, but we can’t give him credit for what he could do in the future. I love Augustin, I watched him his entire career at UT. He’s a super smart kid (4.0 GPA at UT) great decision maker and excellent shooter/passer/ballhandler. I just worry about his size/strength/atheleticism. Especially on defense.

  • Todd Spehr

    Oh, and if Rose really is the best PG in the East (which I’m not ruling out), just what historical perspective can that be put under? When has a rookie PG ever been the best in the conference? Big O, maybe? Dare I say, Isiah?

  • NBK

    then rajon rondo Ryne? wow
    Augustin is playing 3 less minutes per game is averaging the same amount of assists, 2 more points, 3 less rebounds and 2 less steals. ANd rondo is averaging 2 steals. Just based solely on defensive abilities Rondo is better then augustin will ever ever ever be. Take into effect rebounding and the fact that this is rondo’s 3rd year, and he has a ring. You are going to try and say augustin is better? Give me a break.

  • NBK

    When has a conference ever been this week at the Point? And when was the last time a point was this good out of college Todd? Those questions are more important then when was the last time a rookie was the best point in his conference.

  • ciolkstar

    Coaches and systems are part of the game. Can we take away Nash’s MVPs because he had D’Antoni? Nash still made the plays that took his team to a lot of victories. Granted the Knicks don’t have as many Ws, but you cant just say “oh, he plays for D’Antoni so what he does doesn’t count” That’s BLINDNESS! Calderon has been okay, but thats it. He’s slow, has been injured and his turnover ratio is way up this season. And the Raps are playing like crap. He should’ve been an all star last year but his numbers don’t take him there this season.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Ciolkstar, you know who’s the product of haterism, D.J. Augustin, after not getting consistent minutes until the past two weeks or so.

  • NBK

    I am not saying Augustin wont end up to be a better overall player but right now this season for you to say that is ridiculous

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    The conference isn’t weak at the point, it’s just young, NBK.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Looking at the numbers this season, maybe you can say that Rondo’s a better point guard than Augustin. But if you watch them night-in and night-out, it’s clear that Augustin is pure badness, and has the stuff to be one of the best.

  • NBK

    Ciolkstar Calderon had something like a 15-1 assists to TO ratio last year so yeah it will be up. But Nash and Duhon are different players nash already had played in an all star game when D’Antoni came along and Duhon has played in Chicago and done nothing to merit top 10 in the east discussion prior to what is being done this season. If calderon played for D’Antoni dont you think he would be putting up some nash-like numbers? Maybe not shooting % and all that but passing and running the offense he would be much more productive then duhon. So yeah you can say he plays for D’Antoni so his numbers will be inflated and he will look a lot better then he is.

  • http://www.twofistedpress.com Pve84

    I’ve never considered what rondo’s career will be like without ray, paul, and KG. It’ll be interesting to see. He’ll certainly have to develop a jump shot then and I think he’s capable of it.

  • NBK

    Ryne i feel like your focusing on the future, i realize their young but they are weak at the point this season, this season not next season or in 5 seasons, just this season alone.

  • NBK

    And i have watched 4 of the last 5 bobcats games and have been watching boston consistenly for 2 years, plain and simple here is it augustin is probably better then rondo at offense, but you have to take into account defense when your talking about how good a guy is and as i have said and defended Rondo is the best defensive point in the nba.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Rondo doesn’t need to be a shooter to become an all star. See: Kidd, Jason.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Good point about Augustin’s need to improve on defense, NBK. I also admit Rondo seems like the best point guard to run the Celtics at this point. But from the pure, Who’s Better perspective, Augustin’s my choice, even now.

  • NBK

    And for the record as of RIGHT NOW it seems that George Hill is a better player then DJ Augustin.

  • NBK

    I respect your opinion Ryne although i think your the only person that really knows the game that would say that.

  • NBK

    I don’t think Hill is better but the way he has been playing he is, it won’t last, I’m just saying.

  • NBK

    Would you rather of had Gary Payton or John Stockton in `96?

  • NBK

    that was at Ryne

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com Moose

    Pretty much everyone here knows I’m a Ceatles fan. And a lot of you know that I LOVE having Rajon on my team. It’s just great. If you want me to tell you why . . . just take my word for it. He’s a fan favorite over here. EVERY fan.

  • ciolkstar

    I agree with you Ryne that Augustin could and probably should be starting (or getting starting-level tick) especially after playing so well in J Rich’s absence. But you gotta pull back on your Rondo-bashing. Flawed as he may be, the kid is a special talent.

  • ciolkstar

    NBK iCalderon’s assist/TO ratio was like 6/7-1 last season, which is really good. But its more like 3/4-1 this season which is only slightly above average.

  • riggs

    @whahuh: not only was that comment pretty asinine, but it was also wrong, the weakest link is perk…

  • NBK

    Ciolkstar- your right about last season it was 7 to 1 but this year it is about 4.5 to 1 which is still better then Duhon.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Don’t confuse it, I like Rondo too. He’s just not as good as five other Eastern Conference point guards, in my opinion. That’s pretty good, still, and that’s all I’m really trying to say.
    And I’d take Stockton in 1996, hands down. If I could pick any point guard to lead my team through the Playoffs, it would be Short Shorts.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Oh, and Duhon’s a joke. C’mon.

  • NBK

    and calderon is averaging one more assist on a team that scores less and also a point more then duhon. So the duhon is better then calderon statement is that much more wrong.

  • NBK

    See as long as you prefer stockton. for the record 96 was the year payton won DPOY and they went to the finals. I would rather have Payton over stockton in 96 and rondo (1st team all defense this year…watch) over augustin.

  • http://fjkdl.com Jukai

    HEY! A Rondo thread! Awesome!

  • ciolkstar

    I see you Ryne. Augustin has a bright future in the L, but for this season, in terms of production and winning, he’s behind Rondo. Never been a Duhon fan, but the guy has played lights out. That what counts, how well you play. Not how “good” you are or could/should be and Duhon’s performance has been pretty great. Though, I’d accept an argument about his atrocious FG%.
    I hate Stockton. But mainly just beacuse he torched the ’90s Spurs nonstop. Guy was super clutch and defined “consistency”. I’ll take the (vintage) Glove.

  • NBK

    oh and duhon turns the ball over .7 more times a game then calderon. Duhon is overrated solely because he plays for MIKE D’ANTONI
    before this season duhons best year was in 05-06 when he averaged 8 and 5. Your calling a guy whos best season outside of 7 seconds or less was 8 and 5 better then Calderon. Whoever it was that said that i hope you feel really good about yourself.

  • NBK

    Duhon has done nothing Great this year Ciolkstar what are you watching?

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    The Telfair comment was off base. Telfair is a good player.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    I’m ready to call it a truce, NBK, until Jan. 6. Check the schedule. :twisted:

  • http://fjkdl.com Jukai

    I like how suddenly placing a point guard with no jump shot in a situation where he doesn’t need a jump shot suddenly makes him an incredible player.
    Rose, Harris, Calderon, Mo, Bibby, Rondo, in that order. DJ Augustin is not better than Rondo.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    And Isiah was a good judge of talent. At least the players he drafted.

  • http://fjkdl.com Jukai

    Duhon is close behind Rondo. Yes, he’s a product of D’Antoni’s system, but you have to have skill to get 22 assists. That just doesn’t happen in the NBA.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    Devin Harris is having a much better year than Calderon. Why is he lower than Calderon?

  • NBK

    you say what you say jukai then you put a guy with a jump shot somewhere he doesnt belong solely because he has a jump shot. Take Bibby out of your list hes garbage

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    By saying Rondo’s not far ahead of Duhon, Jukai, you know that’s a big sleight on Rondo, right?

  • http://fjkdl.com Jukai

    Allenp: I personally think Harris is better, but it’s a legit argument. Harris is a far beter scorer but I think as pure point guards go, Calderon is a better team leader and organizer. I think Harris wins out as a player because his offense is far superior and Calderon’s passing isn’t AS better than Harris’… but I think there’s a discussion to be had.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    What Jukai said, re: Calderon/Harris.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    All the people downing Duhon for playing for Mike D’Antoni had better have been downing Nash back in the day.
    I know you were Z, but I’m talking about all the new people.

  • http://fjkdl.com Jukai

    NBK: Bibby is a FAR better passer and team leader than Rondo. 1000% better. Not even a debate. Not even close.

  • ciolkstar

    I just haven’t been impressed by Calderon at all this season. Maybe my expectations were too high. He looks slow and has been less efficient. But he’s above Duhon, and I ranked him as such, I just said Duhon has played well this season (especially of late) and deserves some consideration because Calderon, with his injuries, really hasn’t been all star.

  • NBK

    he got 22 assists one game and his team was on fire. plus they were running the whole time, wow i can’t believe you people really think duhon is good thats terrible. he is having a decent season but he is not top in the east. he is playin like top 10ish in the east but thats not that good. 12 and 8 w/ 3 TO’s in 40 minutes with your team scoring 103 a game is not that good.

  • ciolkstar

    Jukai: Bibby used to be, like when he played for the Kings. But his game was all about shooting even then. He was probably the third best passer on those teams behind C Webb and Vlade. Bibby has been super hot this season, but put him on the Celtics and he’s basically Eddie house.

  • NBK

    oh yeah then howcome the hawks can’t win? how come he is playing more minutes a game then rondo and averaging 3 less assists if he is such a much better passer? And does nobody care about defense? Because bibby is the worst defensive point on any list thats been put out there other than augustin

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    Jukai
    Can’t see Bibby as a better passer.
    My point about Harris was regarding somebody’s rankings of the current best point guards in the East and who should be on the All-Star list. Devin Harris should be number one in the balloting for point guards.

  • ciolkstar

    Its not about who’s a “better player”, its about who has “played better”. Arguing that a guy who wins less and puts up worse numbers is better is like saying “he gets bad grades, but he’s really a smart kid”. No thanks.

  • NBK

    wow jukai thats the second time you’ve said something that prove you don’t actually watch basketball your just read articles and think you know everything.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Oh, I see Ciolkstar.
    Put RONDO on any team and he’s a star
    But Bibby is only a star on Atlanta
    Bibby w/ one all-star on his team is “just in the right fit”
    Rondo with three all-stars is great anywhere
    Great, always expect the best from you Ciolkstar.
    Also, NBK: the Hawks HAVE been winning. The Hawks have been DEVASTATED by injuries this year, yet they still have a winning record. That’s most Bibby. Rondo has three more assists because of Ray Allen suddenly being unable to miss at the three spot (a change from last year, not any other year)

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    May I point out no one has mentioned T.J. Ford in this discussion. Let’s see what he does against Jose tonight!

  • NBK

    THE ATLANTA HAWKS HAVE NOT BEAT A WINNING TEAM THIS SEASON JUKAI

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    NBK, aren’t you the one arguing that Duhon’s 22 assists were because “everyone was hot?”
    You’re a nutcase. Go back to latching yourself on Rondo’s rectum.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    THE ATLANTA HAWKS HAVE NOT PLAYED A WINNING TEAM FULLY HEALTHY THIS SEASON NBK CAPLOCKKKKKKK

  • ciolkstar

    Here’s my list from earlier (for clarification)

    Devin Harris, Derrick Rose, Rajon Rondo, Calderon, Chris Duhon

    I put Calderon ahead of Duhon. BUT, I didnt feel good about it because Calderon has been hurt, and his team is losing, and he hasn’t been as good as he was last season. So I added that Duhon should get more love, yes he’s benefitted greatly by playing for D’Antoni, but so have Nash, Amare and Marion.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    TJ Ford is having a better year than Calderon. The Calderon hype has not been met since he’s become a starter.
    Maybe Kenny Smith was right when he said Jose looked so good because he was killing backups.

  • ciolkstar

    Bibby is shooting hot for 1/3 of a season. he was crap in Atlanta for most of his time there last season and hasn’t a good full (healthy) season in several years. His production this season hinges completely on making 3s.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    I actually forgot about Ford. Hmm… my list, rectified, would be: Rose, Harris, Ford, Calderon, Bibby, Rondo, Duhon.
    Calderon was really good the beginning of the season. He’s dropped recently. I guess I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt that he’ll pick up again. If he doesn’t, he’ll drop, simple as that.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    Ciolkstar
    I read the post and I think it was Ryne who had Calderon over Harris.
    And, nobody can put Duhon down for the system while praising Nash. It just doesn’t work. You gotta make a choice. Either Duhon was underutlized before, or D’Antoni’s system is freaking outstanding.

  • NBK

    my fault they beat the hornets when the hornets were struggling but thats the only above 500 team they’ve beat

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    Jukai
    I would give Harris the nod over everybody. Rose has been a beast, but Harris has been slightly better.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Ciolkstar: and he’s been MAKING those threes, hence he’s better than Rondo, who hasn’t been making any shot more than a foot away from the basket. If Bibby gets worse for the season, he’ll drop on my list.
    I really should drop Calderon though. He hasn’t been playing up to par the last few games.

  • ciolkstar

    It’ll be funny when some front office dildo thinks like Jukai and signs Bibby to a large but short term deal this summer and he promptly returns to shooting 39%, when he’s not hurt that is.

  • NBK

    D’Antoni’s system is freaking outstanding for PG’s. You can tell by Nash’s numbers since he left. But the system makes Duhon look better then it made nash look even though nash won 2 mvp’s thats how bad duhon really is.

  • NBK

    So you put bibby ahead of rondo because of three point shots? WOW you just confirmed how little you know

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Allenp: There’s an argument for that too. I don’t think Rose is playing THAT much better than Harris or Ford or Calderon or Bibby or Rondo. I organized them in who I think is more valuable, but will probably change as the season goes on. The real big great PGs (Parker, Davis, Paul, Williams, Billups, Nash) are all out west and they’re all undeniably better. In the east, they’re all pretty close.
    NBK: That last one on Duhon made no sense what-so-ever.

  • ciolkstar

    Bibby’s attachment to the success of the 3 is why I compared him to Eddie House. Rondo helps his team in a bunch of ways. You can’t see past his poor shooting. But shooting is a less consistent positive than the passing, defense, and rebounding that Rondo brings.

  • WhaHuh

    nah riggs perk is good at what he does= defend bigs

  • ciolkstar

    I was a hater, but D’Antoni’s system is great. He made Nash into an (2 time) MVP and made Marion millions of dollars.
    Rose hasn’t been better than Harris. He’s just had the sweet crossovers and big dunks.

  • NBK

    Too further my point of how much better rondo is then bibby and every other gaurd in the league – bibby averaged a whopping 10 ppg against rondo in the playoffs last year and 3 assists and 2 TO’s. how do you want to defend that Jukai becaus that was against rondo

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Ciolkstar (and more or less NBK, but you probably don’t have the mental capacity to understand): That’s where you are wrong. I don’t think Rondo is a better passer than Bibby. Bibby controls the tempo better, starts the offense everytime. Rondo brings the ball down but the offense on the Celtics is a lot different… while none the less impressive, Rondo is sort of running the offense through his teammates, having the Big Three get into position and decide what to do from there. I feel Bibby has more control of the flow of offense. Besides that, Bibby is a superior scorer (and free-throw shooter) and averages less turnovers in more minutes. He’s also a way better leader… leading is Garnett and Pierce’s job.
    You know?

  • NBK

    I was saying that D’Antonis system makes PG’s look better then they are
    Nash would never have won an mvp without Mike but Duhon would never have done anythign relevant we never even would have him in this discussion without D’Antoni!

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    NBK: that’s total BS, Rondo did not play very well EITHER in last year’s playoffs, but they took turns outplaying each other: whenever BOSTON had homecourt, Rondo outplayed Bibby. Whenever the Hawks had homecourt, Bibby obliterated Rondo. You clearly did not watch the games.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Oh wow, NBK can predict different paths in the spectrum of time! Duhon would CLEARLY never be talked about if not for D’Antoni. Yes, hail NBK, seer of all time!

  • NBK

    try to make fun of my mental capacity while your saying ignorant sht like bibby controls the offense and is a better player but is not producing like the guy that lets other guys run his offense? Are you high? If bibby controls the atlants offense like you try to say he does wouldn’t he have better numbers (joe johnson is who their offense is run by, by the way even though bibby dribbles the ball up)

  • ciolkstar

    I hear you Jukai. Rondo isn’t a leader yet, but he really can’t be on that team. And you’d be hard pressed to find a bigger Hawks fan outside of Lang and peeps from the ATL, but I just think Bibby’s on a hot streak. he’s always been a somewhat streaky shooter. But Bibby is certainly a steady hand when it comes to that offense. One place where Rondo has an advantage is in penetrating into the lane to score or dish out. I gotta run, but this has been fun.

  • Young Chris MP3

    I was going to comment, but this thread has taken a turn for the worse with the arguments being made and what they’re being backed up with. I’m a Chris Paul this one and pass.

  • Melo Man TO

    TJ ford!!!!! and Gp is a hypocrit. near the end of his career he wud stop at nothing to get a ring, even breaking into someones house via window

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    NBK: Bibby dribbles the ball up and calls out the plays then sets up the offense by deciding who to give it to. The SAME WAY Billups plays. Joe Johnson is a fairly capable PG but when Bibby is in, he totally let’s Bibby control everything. That should tell you something.
    Don’t overthink though, you don’t want to hurt yourself.
    Ciolkstar: we can agree to disagree. If I could just see Rondo take over without the big three, I think I’d be a lot more convinced. Just have a monster game without two of the three hall of famers, that would make me rethink things. You do have a good point too in that I can’t really gauge his leadership abilities with the team he’s in. He may be a far superior leader and we wont know until he’s on his own.

  • http://fjkdls.com Jukai

    Anyway NBK, I’ll let you type the caplock some more and give me more one sided irrelevant details or something. See you later guys.
    Chris Duhon for MVP!!!

  • http://www.ojhoops.blogspot.com the baconator

    Yo, big news!!! My brother just got a text from MySuns Mobile: The Suns just traded Raja Bell, Boris Diaw, and Sean Singletary to the Bobcats for Jason Richardson, Jared Dudley, and a second round pick!!! Holy crap!!

  • http://www.mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Myles Brown

    Breaking news. Steve Kerr should be fired.

  • NBK

    Yeah jukai keep trying to make fun of my mental capacity, and while your thinking of more insults why don’t you check out game by game the 1st round last year. I watched every single game from start to finish, and just like i watch most every game i can during the regular season, and live in phx and play bibby during the summers, (my mom was babysat him when he was little) and have seem him get progessivley worse and rely more and more on his jump shot but you obviously know so much about the hawks. And i know who puts them in their offensive sets but that does not mean the offense is not run through him it goes through joe johnson. Thats like saying Derrick Fisher is who the lakers offense runs through while kobe is just “capable.”

  • blackjack

    Payton is a bitch, he rode on the coattails, of Shaq, Kobe, and Wade to his two titles. shut the hell up

  • Boing Dynasty

    blackjack, your an idiot. Go practice counting.

  • tealish

    The title and premise of this article is unnecessary. If anything, he’s loved by too many for too little.
    My assessment: Harris/Rose, Calderon, Bibby, Rondo, Mo, Ford, DJ, Duhon.
    Harris has played better than Rose all year. It doesn’t matter that we think (know) Rose is/will be a better player.

  • jaymes

    Its funny, i remember when i was 15,16 and Maloney was killin it, thinkin “damn, this dude is a sick player”…I hope Rondo’s career fairs a little better.

  • http://celtics.com KobeWearsAPurpleThong

    Another example of players w/o rings hating on those who do. I.E. Barkley. The Glove can’t just congratulate another PG doing a hell of a job. That’s why he’s an a$$, and always will be.

  • Caleb

    Atleast he didn’t call Tony Parker better than Chris Paul.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Jukai, you would seriously take Bibby over Rondo to run the point in Boston? Like… seriously? You know that defense matters, right? Because I never see that in your analyses.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Oh, and TNT just got got. Barkley is just talking crazy now. NBA TV is where it’s at.

  • tealish

    Bell and Diaw swapped for JRich. Interesting.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Mike D’s system is just made for a pg to get dimes. Think about it, if the guy are looking to shoot as soon as they see daylight and as early as possible in the shot clock… chances are that pass is coming from the guy that’s bringing up the ball or setting up the offense.
    What that means is that a pg will get tons of assists on jumpers made because they’re looking to take that J. All the time.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Which brings me to another point : Parker is penalized (FROM A FANTASY POV) by Pop’s system because he never gets those gimme dimes by just bringing it up the court and have your wings throwing it up on the first pass. Pop don’t play.

  • Todd Spehr

    Tealish – Interesting would cover the Steve Kerr Era in PHX quite nicely…

  • http://twentythreenine.blogspot.com Russ Bengtson

    Devin just scored 14 points in the first five minutes of tonight’s game against the Knicks.

  • http://chugachugachugachuchu.blogspot.com/ BETCATS

    J-Rich got traded to Phoneix. THis is crazy!

  • JD

    I think when arguing Rondo’s case for the All Star, you have to look at two things; how many minutes he plays compared to the other PGs, and his role on the Celtics. First, Rondo plays 5-10 less minutes per game than almost every other PG in consideration for the all star team. That skews his stats a little bit. Second, Rondo is the FOURTH option on the Celtics. Every other point guard is at worst the third option, and none of them have to defer to three HOFs. Having the Big 3 certainly help Rondo in many ways, but on a bad team, I think Rondo could certainly score in the 15-20 ppg range and still average about 6-7 assists because he’d have a much larger role. He gets almost no plays called for him whatsoever; he has to create his plays when the original play doesn’t work out, or in transition.

  • http://sjsu.edu davidR

    i know it’s late, but NBK you are hating on the hawks too much with the “hawks havent beat a winning team.” when they were fully healthy in the beginning of the season, they beat orlando and the hornets, and lost a road game to boston by 1 point (without josh smith).

  • Surreal

    Rondo is good but becuase he plays in a good will not get a fair assessment from most people. I think he’s not all-star material yet but he’ll be one of these days reagrdless if he plays with the big three or not.

  • maio

    Rajon Rondo 16-13-17
    Jason Kidd 19-16-16
    Jessica Alba 34-28-34

  • Dutch Rob

    I gotta agree with Surreal. This kid can play, but because he plays with the big three people dont notice it . I watched Game 6 of the finals last season he got my vote for player of the game. Rondo was all over the place it was incredible to watch

  • underdog

    Devin Harris – early candidate for MIP.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com Hursty

    Do most of you even take into account the systems that the players are in? Damn. And the supporting cast? Rondo has Jesus and Paul, and House when he’s in. And some athletic bigs like Powe/KG who can get to the rack/make a jumper.
    harris has Vince and Yi. Thats it. He’s forced to do a lot more of the scoring because its needed.
    Duhon has good shooters at every position on the Knicks. At least guys who can make a layup most of the time anyways.
    Calderon is injured, has had his coach fired, adjustments to the system and a new big to incorporate that demands the ball and doesnt lend his game to assists very well.
    Nash is on the down side of his career. He’s 34 and Terry Porter is making everyone unhappy. Ever think that Duhon might be averaging more assists/points not just because of the system, but because of the quality of player he is passing to? Or that he is older/more experienced? C’mon.

  • ClydeSays

    Rondo, All Star? No. I’m a fan of his game (and the C’s), but he needs to start hitting elbow jumpers, corner threes, something… For a paint guy, he also needs to up his FT%. I think he’ll get there, but he’s way behind Harris & Calderon on the offensive end.

    On Defense he’s one of the best defensive PG’s in the League.

  • Pingback: Today’s Links 12/11 at Celtics247.com - All Celtics, All The Time!

  • RIc Hardwood

    what Rondo doesn’t have (a reliable jumpshot) he makes up for in hustle, defence, and selflessness. And besides Chris Paul, I can’t think of a better defensive pg…

  • http://www.slamonline.com Cub Buenning

    Matt Maloney was a year ahead of me in college and along with Jerome Allen they were the reasons I never got to play in an NCAA tournament game…..
    Those two dominated the Ivy League like no tandem before or since has ever done.
    They went like 3 years undefeated in conference

  • GreenDreamer

    Reading this thread I am reminded, yet again, of how undervalued defense is by most people. Jose Calderon better than Rondo? Mo Williams? D.J. Augustin?!?!? Those guys aren’t anywhere in Rajon’s zip code on that end of the floor. Augustin’s a rook, so he gets a free pass here, but Rondo dominates the other two when they meet. It’s a joke. They can’t guard him, and their offense disappears with 9 dogging them all over the floor. Bibby? Playoffs, thank you. The only two worthy of even being in the conversation, in the East, are Harris and Rose. Rose is going to be great, but he’d still learning. Harris is playing great, and would be deserving of a berth. The Celtics win with the their defense. Garnett and Rondo key that defense. He actually is second in win shares on the Celtics afetr Ray, this season, and he’s doing that by being second on the team in offensive (to Ray) AND defensive (to KG) win shares… all while only playing a little over 31 minutes a night. Rondo isn’t the Big Three’s water boy, he’s actually on their level. The kid is regualarly outshining his HOF teammates, and people are acting as if that is easy. It means that he’s really, really good.

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