Rajon Rondo Already Preparing to Become an NBA Coach

The Boston Celtics star point guard plans to hoop for another decade or so, but once Rajon Rondo hangs up his sneakers for good, he can see himself become an NBA head coach. The process, Rondo believes, has already begun. Per the Boston Globe: “I have a long way to go,’ the Celtics star said recently. ‘And obviously I want to play for another 10 or 11 years. But it is something that’s in the back in my mind. And it starts now. I think the process is starting now.’ The process of becoming a head coach. ‘I watched Doc [Rivers] for seven years,’ Rondo said. ‘I watched how he handled certain players, how he handled certain situations, how you handle a four-game losing streak, how you handle a 10-game winning streak.’ And now Rondo is doing the same with Rivers’s replacement, rookie Celtics coach Brad Stevens. ‘I’m watching him very closely,’ Rondo said. He watches how Stevens studies and prepares for games, how he draws up plays and picks out lineups, and how he delivers speeches. He asks Stevens questions, about the names of the plays an opponent is running, how many times it runs each of them per game, and if he can have the clipboard — to draw up his own plays. ‘He has some good ones,’ Stevens said. Atop Rondo’s priorities list is, of course, returning to the court after knee surgery last February. He has been cleared for full contact in practice, making a January debut seem likely. It’s hard to say, because he doesn’t want to rush back before he’s 100 percent, a feeling shared by the executives who view him as the franchise’s future. As for his own future, he said coaching would be a perfect fit. During the Big Three era, Rajon Rondo wasn’t shy about telling veteran leaders how a play should be run. ‘I think it just comes natural, with me being so vocal on the court, knowing everything out there on the court — what’s going on, play-calling, guys who have it, guys who don’t have it,’ Rondo said. And he believes that, in terms of coaching, he has what it takes. ‘The NBA game, I feel like, is almost second nature to me now — knowing other teams’ tendencies like the back of my hand,’ he said. Added Stevens, ‘My goal in coaching him is to be the best support that I can to help him be the best player that he can be, but also to start to talk about those things.'”