Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Rondo glad to be back with team
By Greg Payne
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesCeltics point guard Rajon Rondo isn't remorseful for his suspension, but is ready to get back to work.
WALTHAM, Mass. -- Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo said Tuesday he was anxious to return to the lineup Wednesday night after sitting out his two-game suspension.
"Yeah, days off, allowed my body to get a chance to rest," said Rondo, who joked (we think) that he spent his time off in Mexico. "I wanted to be out there with my teammates, but obviously, two-game suspension, and, like I said, I was glued in front of the TV (watching the two games).
"Hopefully I don't feel too winded (Wednesday). I've been off for about a week now, so we'll see tomorrow."
Rondo was hit with a two-game ban following a dust-up with Nets forward Kris Humphries in the Celtics' home loss to Brooklyn last Wednesday, and was forced to sit out Boston's back-to-back this past weekend. The Celtics went 1-1 in the games Rondo missed.
"It was difficult. I love being around the guys," Rondo said. "I love coming in, practicing, just being around them, on the team plane. But I had to miss that for a couple days, but other than that, everything's back to normal."
The Celtics aren't satisfied with their 9-8 record, and Rondo said his return to the court will mark a renewed effort to improve things moving forward.
"I mean, I want to get better. I want to run off eight or nine games straight," said Rondo. "It starts in practice and it starts with staying in the game, so I just want to go out there and give it all for my teammates and try to get some wins. We've got to get this show on the road. We've got to have a great December. November is behind us. I think we're 9-8, but it's a new month and I'm ready to go."
Rondo also said he isn't lamenting the abrupt ending to his 37-game streak of double-figure assists, which tied John Stockton for the second-longest streak in NBA history.
"It may be (a big deal), once I get 40 or 50, but right now, it's a record," Rondo said. "Records are meant to be broken. I think I was second, tied with John Stockton, so that's a good accomplishment. But, nevertheless, it's about wins and losses."
Coach Doc Rivers said he'll obviously be pleased to have Rondo back in the lineup on Wednesday with the Minnesota Timberwolves in town, but did stress that he was able to take several positives out of his point guard's time away.
"Well, I though the ball movement was better in some ways, but I don't know if it was smarter, necessarily," said Rivers. "You still want the ball in Rondo's hands. But I thought it allowed other guys to understand how important that is. And I think they saw that. There's always a positive in any negative, and you knew something good was going to happen. You knew more bad, not having him. But, overall, you can always get something out of it. When Kevin misses a game, Paul, you have to find something."