Don’t look now, but it looks like Rajon Rondo is putting together a nice February. With monthly averages mirroring
those of his career bests, Rondo’s progression from his ACL tear has been pleasant to watch.
Despite the dreadful shooting performances in his last two appearances, his shooting percentage of 47% is right on with his career average. His assist averages are slightly down, but I guess that could be expected when you replace Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce with Gerald Wallace and… yeah, GERALD WALLCE. When I say his averages are slightly down, I mean towards his career average. And nothing about Rondo’s career assist averages can be considered average. His 9.7 assists per game in February would rank second best over the whole season. His rebounding numbers have also shown glimpses of returning to those days when a triple-double per week wasn’t mind-blowing. If played out over the entire season, Rondo’s February average of 5.1 rebounds per game would be tops in the league among point guards. His defensive rebounding rate is also tops among point guards, barring qualification.
With five straight games with 30+ minutes played, it’s clear Brad Stevens is nearing full trust in Rondo’s knee. While he has sat three games this month, Rondo’s most promising stats lay in his most critiqued area: his shooting. Albeit the extremely small sample size, am I the only noticing Rondo is hitting threes?! His confidence is exponentially higher than we’ve seen in years past, as his trey-per-game average is at an all-time high… by a lot. In his seven years prior, he had only attempted more than five treys once. He’s already done it three times this year. His 4-5 performance behind the arc set a career high in makes in a game for the assistman. While “Rondo” and “Sharpshooter” while probably never be synonymous, it’s be an absolute game-changer if defenses have to start respecting Rondo on the catch. The other area that we’ve seen improvement from Rondo is at the charity stripe. While I’m not even going to try and attempt to argue that his 13 attempts is any bit close to a reasonable sample size, the 71% for the month of February is much higher than his career average.
Am I the ugliest Rondo homer around? Yes. Is 13 games the ugliest sample size for such an article as this? Yes. But do I still freak out and call my mom into the room every time a Rondo three falls through? YES! With the Celtics slipping more and more into lottery heaven, the next few months will be keen for Rajon Rondo to rediscover his pre-injury excellence and prove to management that he will be the cornerstone I believe he can be. If the future months look just as good and better than this, be excited. He’s scheduled to play tonight against the Jazz, pay close attention to how defenders guard him on the perimeter!