Thursday, December 18, 2014

[Update] Trade Rumor: Rondo to Dallas

Photo: Getty Images

After flirting with another triple-double last night at the TD Garden, in a 109-92 Celtics win over Orlando, Rajon Rondo was the subject of yet another trade rumor. On Wednesday afternoon it was reported by multiple sources that Danny Ainge was fielding trade offers for many of  the C's players including his captain and Jeff Green among others.

Almost immediately after the game ended, it was reported by Yahoo Sports that the Dallas Mavericks are very much interested in acquiring Rondo's services and have been in serious talks with Boston for a potential swap between the two teams. In return the Celtics would receive multiple draft picks, including one first-rounder, plus back-up center Brandan Wright. Of course other players would have to be involved to match salaries.

Rondo, who is in the final year of his deal, could still walk and not stay long-term if Ainge decides to pull the trigger on this rumored trade with Dallas. The Celtics captain has stated he will test free-agency come next July, but that Boston is where he would like to remain for the foreseeable future.

When asked in the locker room last night in amidst of the Celtics' second straight win, the guard who finished his evening with 13 points, 15 assists and seven rebounds, seemed unfazed by the report that he could be dealt.

"Trade talk has been a way of life since I've been here," Rondo said. "It's just part of it."

Photo: Getty Images
The Mavericks on the other hand, have had Rondo on their radar since they traded away their starting point guard Jose Calderon in order to re-acquire defensive big-man Tyson Chandler from the Knicks in the offseason. Veteran guard Raymond Felton (who has yet to play a single game due to injuries and suspensions) also came over in that deal from New York. Since then, Dallas had re-signed Devin Harris, signed Jameer Nelson and J.J. Barea. All three have had moderate success playing the one in Rick Carlisle's system. But in a very high-scoring offense with a multitude of shooters, Rondo would instantly make Dallas a championship contender out west if they can pull off this rumored deal.
For Celtics fans, it would be full 're-build mode,' with a fire sale of other pending trades surely to follow if Ainge decides to send Rondo out of town. Most can probably forget about the possibility of a 'big free agent' signing next offseason. But the risk remains the same on both sides of the coin, and wherever the point guard's final destination will be by the end of  this season. Will Rondo agree to stay beyond 2014? Whether most believe he's a 'max-contract' guy or not no one can predict what decision Rondo will make next summer.

In the meantime, just picture that potential starting-five in Dallas? Rondo-Monta Ellis-Chandler Parsons-Dirk Nowitzki and Tyson Chandler. That would arguably be the best starting lineup in the NBA. They could definitely make a run at the champion Spurs and the team with the current best overall record in the league, the Memphis Grizzles.

You know Mark Cuban is salivating as we speak.

Update: 10:30AM

According to CBS Sports, aside from Dallas four other teams are interested in acquiring Rajon Rondo, which include Houston, New York, Sacramento and the Los Angeles Lakers. A league source says that the Celtics captain would be "open" to re-signing with "at least" two of those teams, meaning the Mavs and Rockets would have the best opportunity to keep the point guard long-term.

Joel Pavón

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