Celtics’ Rondo says 2-game suspension taught him nothing
By Ben Golliver
Need 10+ assists a night? Rajon Rondo is your guy. Looking for feigned remorse? Bark up a different tree.
The Boston Globe reports that the Celtics’ All-Star point guard was his typically chippy self on Tuesday when asked to break down his recent two-game suspension for getting into a shoving match with Nets forward Kris Humphries that spilled into the baseline seats at TD Garden.
“I wanted to be out there with my teammates but obviously a 2-game suspension, like I said I was glued in front of the TV,” said Rondo, who told reporters he went to Mexico during the break. “Hopefully I don’t feel too winded tomorrow. I think I’ve been off for about a week now. We’ll see tomorrow.”
When asked if he learned any lessons during his third suspension in nine months, he said: “No.”
Rondo did say he missed being around his teammates. ”It was difficult,” he said, “I love being around the guys. I love coming into practice and being around them on the team plane, but I had to miss that for a couple of days but other than that everything is back to normal.”
Rondo was suspended for two games last season after throwing a basketball at referee Sean Wright during a February game against the Pistons. He was also suspended for Game 2 of a first-round Eastern Conference playoff series against the Hawks in May after bumping referee Marc Davis.
These were Rondo’s first comments since the incident. He did not address reporters following last Wednesday’s game against the Nets. Rondo was suspended after he shoved Humphries, who had fouled Kevin Garnett in the neck area on a driving shot attempt. Humphries shoved back, and then Celtics guard Jason Terry joined the fray, as did Nets forward Gerald Wallace. From there, the pile spilled into the seats, where shoving between multiple members of both teams continued.
His ejection brought an end to his streak of 37 consecutive games registering 10 or more assists. That streak dated back to a Mar. 11 loss to the Lakers and covered the last 24 games of the 2011-12 season plus Boston’s first 13 games of this season. Rondo’s streak tied Jazz guard John Stockton for the second-longest in NBA history. Lakers great Magic Johnson holds the record with 46 straight games during the 1983-84 season.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers called out his team for playing “soft” after the loss to the Nets and his team went 1-1 without Rondo, beating the Blazers at home on Friday night before losing to the Bucks in Milwaukee on Saturday. Boston is currently 9-8 on the season and in fourth place in the Atlantic Division.
Rondo, 26, is averaging 12.9 points, 12.9 assists, 4.6 rebounds and 1.9 steals per game for the Celtics this season.