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Rajon Rondo Making Points About Assists

Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald had this bit of information in a recent article

Stirring the nest

Kendrick Perkins offered up some cannon fodder for tomorrow’s game against the Hornets.

The Celtics center told the media that, according to Rondo, the only reason Chris Paul has so many assists is that “the ball is in his hands all the time.”

Look for a high over/under number on assists between Rondo and Paul.

My first reaction is that…well…so would Rondo. But that’s his point. In the Celtic’s offense, the ball often moves through a number of other hands on the way to a potential assist. The assist leaders like Steve Nash, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, and Jason Kidd do seem to have the ball more and the offense runs through them more than other players on the team. Rondo feels he is in their class.

You would have to run a check of the ‘distribution of assists’ (and research could go deeper, I guess) on those other teams to see if it really holds water. But it makes some sense to me.

We are hearing it second hand (from Perkins), but KP is just being a good teammate and might be trying to help his teammate get some “Top 5 PG love”. We have heard that ‘Top 5 PG’ status is a bone of contention between Rondo’s camp and the Celtics regarding contract discussions.

Speaking of contract discussions, the timing of this game on Sunday against the Chris Paul Hornet couldn’t be better…

Murphy in the same article…

Extra time

Though the deadline in Rondo’s negotiation for a contract extension has been pushed back to 6:30 p.m. on Monday, both sides reacted to the news in almost blase fashion.

Danny Ainge said yesterday that he knew of the extension – enacted because the NBA office isn’t open on weekends – but didn’t even discuss the change with agent Bill Duffy, who didn’t learn of the extension until yesterday. The deadline was originally today.

So it seems that neither side expects a big move in position by the other…even with the extension. If this is a game of chicken, both sides play it well.

For an interesting look at what Rondo may be worth, and it’s closer to what Rondo wants than what the Cs want to pay, according to Jack Jemsek – check out his article on Rondonomics. Here is a quick look…

It’s no secret that Rondo’s draft class is struggling mightily to negotiate the extensions that they are eligible for.  Portland has been busy as they have signed both of their 2006 1st round draftees to extensions.  This summer, Brandon Roy received a maximum contract that amounts to a $81M/5 yr deal.  That was just recently followed by the Blazers paying LaMarcus Aldridge $70M/5 yr, $5M of which is reportedly tied to incentives.  Bargnani signed a $50M/5 yr contract with the Toronto Raptors.  But that’s it.  Rudy Gay and Tyrus Thomas are also waiting patiently this week along with Rondo.

So, should we expect an especially intriguing match up on Sunday? Or no deviation from the Celtics game plan? I’ll opt for no deviation, though I’m sure Rondo will enjoy any chance that presents itself in the individual duel with CP3 to rise to the occasion. So, I guess the answer is both.

Should be a game of closer interest for the above reasons.

The Celtics play the New Orleans Hornets at 6pm on Sunday.

Thomas Halzack

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