Saturday, December 20, 2014

Rondo: I'm dying to get another ring again

Photo: CSNNE
It has been four years since Rajon Rondo competed for an NBA title, now as a member of the Dallas Mavericks, Rondo has a chance to return to the NBA Finals sooner than anyone expected.

Rondo, who was introduced to Dallas last night, already has high expectations as one of the newest Mavericks.

"There's one goal that you have in mind, and I'm dying to get another ring again," Rondo said in last night's press conference. "I want another parade." 
Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who sent center Brandon Wright, point guard Jameer Nelson, small forward Jae Crowder, two draft picks and a $12.9 million trade exception in exchange for Rondo and forward Dwight Powell, isn't worried about the possibility of losing Rondo when his contract runs out this summer. Although Rondo will be a free agent, Cuban believes he will be able to talk Rondo into signing a long-term deal to stay.
"We're passed the days of rent-a-player," Cuban said. "We want him to be here for a long time and we want to earn his desire to stay here. We have to convince him that he wants to be here because we know we'll want him. We're going to do everything possible to keep him here forever."
Photo: G.J. McCarthy (AP/The Dallas Morning News)
Convincing Rondo to stay in Dallas shouldn't be difficult. There won't be a lot of championship contending teams willing to sign Rondo to a max or close-to-max deal, most of them already have a point guard they want to stick with, or have their money tied to another player.

And at this stage of his career, Rondo will not sign with another team unless they're in the NBA championship conversation.

From what Cuban is saying about doing whatever it takes to keep him, sounds like Rondo won't have a problem getting the deal he wants.
"I'm definitely excited and optimistic about the situation here," Rondo said. "The future seems bright, and I'm just looking forward to winning a championship as fast as possible, and hopefully we can keep this team together."
As a player who has had big games in the playoffs, played in two NBA Finals and won one championship, Rondo definitely brings to Dallas plenty of playoff experience. It's no secret that he definitely steps his game up in the playoffs, his playoff career averages are higher in every statistical category in comparison to his regular season numbers:

[08-2012] Playoffs: 14.5 points, 9.2 assists, 5.7 rebounds and 2 steals per game

[07-2014] Regular Season: 11 points, 8.5 assists, 4.7 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game

Future Hall-of-Famer Dirk Nowitzki had nothing but kind words to say about his newest point guard.
"I think he's showed in his career that he's a fierce, fierce competitor," said Nowitzki. "In the west that position is as loaded as it gets, so he's going to have his hands full every night, and I think he's going to look forward to that
"As we've seen throughout his career, when the competition gets higher, he raises his level and he's at his best in playoff and big-time games. That's exactly what you want. On a team that has aspirations to go high and play deep in the playoffs, you need a guy who gets better as it gets later in the year." 
Expect to see a rejuvenated Rondo in Dallas. It's been a while since he's played on the big stage, and when the lights are at its brightest, his game is nearly flawless.

Rondo mentioned his playoff days with the Celtics, and says he can't wait to get back to playing competitive basketball.
"It was very challenging this last couple years," Rondo said. "I've been fortunate enough to play for future Hall-of-Famers and great teams and a great coach in Doc Rivers. And to get back to that situation and be able to play with future Hall of Famers and a great coach and a team that's ready to contend for a title, I'm fired up. I'm ready to go."
Rondo won't have to wait long for competitive basketball, he makes his Mavericks debut tonight at Dallas against the NBA champion San Antonio Spurs.

Josue Pavon 
Twitter: @Joe_Sway10

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