After nearly a year of being sidelined, Boston Celtics All-Star, Rajon Rondo, is expected to make his return on Friday during the Celtic’s scheduled game against the Los Angeles Lakers. Rondo has not stepped foot on a court since January 25, 2013, when he tore his ACL in Atlanta. With the date of the team’s game against the Lakers drawing near, Rondo’s fellow Celtics teammates wait in anticipation for the return of one of their best players.
Rondo’s recent tweet on Twitter shows how eager the guard is to return himself. On Monday, Rondo tweeted, “29,233,380 secs,” a number that equates to 338 days, 8 hours, and 23 minutes, which is the exact period of time between Rondo’s injury and the game against the Lakers on Friday.
On Wednesday Rondo made significant progress in moving forward towards his goal of returning before Friday night’s game. Prior to the Celtics game with the Toronto Raptors, Rondo worked with Boston’s NBA Development League. Afterwards, Rondo joined the team’s practice before their game against Toronto and joined the Celtics bench during the game. It was the very same Wednesday that the Celtics made an announcement that they had traded their reserve point guard Jordan Crawford, which further implies that the return of Rondo is near.
When discussing Rondo following the team’s practice yesterday, Boston Celtic’s coach Brad Stevens stated that, “When Rajon’s on the court, I’m telling you, everybody has a better idea of where they’re supposed to be because he helps remind them and point them in that direction.” In addition, Stevens mentioned the likelihood that Rondo would be placed on a minute restriction with his statement, “I got asked the other day if and when he comes back, whether he will be on a minutes restriction, and the answer is yes. We will cross those bridges with exact numbers when we get there and go from there. But he looked pretty good.” In regard to this issue, Rondo briefly stated that, ”I’m not coming back playing 38 minutes a night. I will have an impact on the game, but not like I used to have when I first come back.”
Even though the Celtics have not clearly confirmed that Rondo’s return will be on Friday, it does seem that all of their recent developments have been in attempts to do just that. While the Celtics are looking forward to Rondo’s return, Rondo still has some hefty expectations to meet. His return comes with great timing, considering the Celtics nine-game losing streak prior to Wednesday night’s game. After a year of absence, Rondo will be welcomed by a new coach and a new role within the framework of his team. Although it is expected that Rondo will not be at his best, the Celtics will need him to recover as quickly as possible. Considering how the Celtics are well out of reach from a championship, the team is considering completely recreating itself, however, Rondo will be a key component of this newly-drafted Boston Celtics.
By Aaron Weis