Rumors have been swirling about Rajon Rondo since he came back into the lineup last month. Well, technically, rumors have been swirling about a Rondo trade for a few years now. The reasons for the Boston Celtics to unload the last really good player on their roster have been well documented, so why haven’t they been able to get a deal done?
Because they’ve been holding out for way too much, that’s why. Reports indicate that they expect some combination of a talented young player or multiple first-round picks. That’s just plain old crazy talk. Do the Celtics think the rest of the league doesn’t understand all the reasons they don’t want to build around him?
No, they can’t be that unrealistic. They have to know that the only teams that would actually make a move and give something up for him are those that think they are just one playmaking point guard away from competing for a title. The problem? Those teams don’t have the kind of young players or draft picks the Celtics are looking for. At this point, Danny Ainge has backed himself into a corner, and if he doesn’t stand down from his way-too-high demands, he’ll end up getting nothing for him.
The thing is, getting rid of Rondo isn’t just about what the team would get back for him. It is about moving on from the championship teams of the recent past. Rondo is the last remaining player from those squads, and moving him sends the message that the team is going in a new direction.
The Celtics need to move Rondo so they can move on, but they won’t find any takers until they get more realistic about his value on the open market.