"No, we get along extremely well," Bryant said Friday after the team's shootaround at TD Garden, hours before he went on to score 22 points in the Lakers' 113-96 loss to Rondo (12 points, 16 assists) and the Celtics. "We see the game in a similar fashion in terms of our aggressiveness and mindset. It was good to get together with him."
"We just talked about the game, we talked about the league. We talked about good old memories of playing in the series against each other, stuff like that."Kobe Bryant
While there are no active talks between the two franchises involving a trade for Rondo, sources told ESPN's Ramona Shelburne that the Lakers and Celtics did have a brief discussion a few months ago. It's not clear which team initiated the call.
Rondo is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. Could Bryant, who has long raved about Rondo, envision the All-Star point guard joining the Lakers?
"No, I haven't thought about having any future teammates before," Bryant said sarcastically. Their meeting at The Paramount in Beacon Hill was more to chat about the NBA and memories from their two Finals matchups in 2008 and 2010, Bryant said.
When initially asked about their sitdown, Bryant joked, "It was delicious." He also was asked whether he and Rondo -- the only two holdovers from those Finals matchups -- commiserated about the current state of their rebuilding franchises.
"Like a mutual intervention-type thing?" Bryant asked, laughing. "Nah, not really. We just talked about the game, we talked about the league. We talked about good old memories of playing in the series against each other, stuff like that -- different strategies and things they tried to do against us and things we tried to do against them.
"It was a basketball geek conversation."
Bryant has praised Rondo many times in the past and did so again Friday, calling him "extremely intelligent. Very, very smart. Prepares very well, and he understands the deeper [subtleties] of the game."
Added Bryant: "I just never really understood how a guy that size could get 17, 20 rebounds. I still don't really understand that. It's unbelievable."
Last season, Bryant complimented Rondo by saying, "From what I understand, he's an a--h---, like me."
After the Celtics defeated the Lakers on Friday night, Rondo said, "I think he called me an a--h---. I thought the same thing of him. Just two a--h---s having breakfast."
Sources stressed that the Celtics would prefer to re-sign Rondo when he becomes a free agent this summer. Their willingness to engage in talks regarding Rondo is merely informational at this point, sources said.
However, the Lakers have long held interest in the point guard, who helped Boston defeat them in the 2008 NBA Finals, and sources indicate he is high on their list of free-agent targets this summer.
Should the teams re-engage in discussions about Rondo, sources indicated Boston likely would ask for at least one first-round draft pick.
The Lakers owe their own first-round pick to the Phoenix Suns unless it falls within the top five picks. They also own Houston's first-round pick.
Information from ESPNBoston.com's Chris Forsberg was used in this report.