The way NBA free agency has played out over the past week has been fascinating with the initial tidal wave hitting on Sunday and spilling over into Monday. Since then there have been mostly minor pick-ups, and now we are in a holding pattern when it comes to a handful of free agents.
Teams, players, and agents are all waiting to see where Kawhi Leonard winds up as there will be a mad scramble to sign lower tier free agents when that domino falls, particularly by whichever two teams in the mix for Kawhi don’t come away with the ultimate prize.
One of those players is Rajon Rondo, who is poised to re-join the Lakers one way or another. Financially, Rondo probably doesn’t want to see the Lakers sign Leonard as LA would have scraps left over to offer free agents. But, the chance to be the starting point guard for a potentially all-time great team with LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Leonard in the fold could potentially get him another decent pay day in a year or two.
The Sixers are another team to watch when it comes to Rondo as back-up point guard TJ McConnell just signed with the Indiana Pacers.
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The Celtics too could be interested in a reunion with Rondo. Rondo actually played under Brad Stevens early in the coach’s Boston tenure but the two never seemed to be on the same page, prompting Danny Ainge to trade his championship-winning point guard in December of 2014.
Rondo has done a lot of growing up since then, emerging as a leader to young players in Chicago and New Orleans, but given that the Celtics are doing everything they can to have a sunshine and rainbows locker room in 2019-20 – bringing back the mercurial Rondo might not be the best course of action.
Rondo still has all the feels for Boston, calling it “home” when he came back last season as a member of the rival Lakers.
“It’s where it all started,” Rondo said. “Danny [Ainge] believed in me from Day One and my career probably wouldn’t be the same if I went anywhere else.”
The Knicks could also emerge as a suitor for Rondo given their young roster. As mentioned above, younger players adore the Kentucky product.