This is a far cry from some teams that will wilt and fall apart when one of their key players does a stupid act and misses a game (yes I’m talking about Stoudamire and the Knicks). Rondo’s team used his suspension as a motivator to bring their A-Game and win what was termed an L by many experts before the game.
Apparently the team not only forgave Rondo for his mistake, but openly supported him. KG and Dooling even told reporters that the win was for Rondo. This seems to fly in the face of previous reports that Rondo’s mercurial nature had alienated him from his teammates and coaching staff. After watching the teams first reaction to the win, I can only say that Rondo seems to have a One thing we learned from the post game interviews of Game 2, was that the Celtics were not fazed by the Rondo suspension. In fact they seemed to use the 1 game suspension as motivation in their play, in a sort of win one for the Gipper game.different relationship with his teammates than what is being reported.
I can only suspect that the Rondo we see giving interviews to the media is not the same Rondo that his teammates know. A Rondo that is mercurial and moody would not have teammates pulling for him after he gets himself suspended in the playoffs with a somewhat selfish move.
Maybe his teammates have learned to respect him for how he plays on the court, and how much he sacrifices his body in going after every loose ball and driving layup. We all were amazed when he repeatedly drove to the hole against Shaq in the 2010 playoffs, even after Shaq took his head off for a couple plays. And last year when we saw his arm dangling by its tendons after the Wade cheapshot, we didn’t think we would see him for the rest of the playoffs. But he played the rest of that series and proved that he was a gamer.
This seems to have earned him a leadership spot with the Big 3 and the Celtics’ coaching staff, something that he didn’t earn in the first year of the Big 3. With this leadership he has earned a little more leeway for stupid mistakes and immature moves. He now knows that his team has his back and will support him.
I’m looking for Rondo to have a huge Game 3. We know that the Celtics will again bring a different offensive feel to this game. The 1st game featured mainly half-court sets and hero ball. Game 2 saw the emergence of Paul Pierce as the point-forward. I think Game 3 will see a running and slashing Rondo, as he works his butt off to make up for his suspension. We know Rondo is smart, so he should know not to do too much, which would throw the whole Celtics’ offense off. But we should see him driving a lot more, and playing a ramped up defense in the normal Celtics sets.
Hopefully we get to see a rejuvenated and aggressive Rondo in Game 3. We know what he can do in big games, and Game 3 should be a big game.
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