One thing that simply won’t go away is Rajon Rondo being on the trading block, no matter how many times the Boston Celtics deny it. The latest one suggest they’d be willing to send him to the Sacramento Kings, looking for a pass-happy point guard, and willing to part ways with Isiah Thomas, Ben McLemore, Marcus Thornton, Jason Thompson and some draft picks.
Sounds a bit much? According to the Latinopost and Onchie Ebriega, the Kings are trying to work out a package that will satisfy the Celtics into giving up on Rondo, the one remaining piece from the team that won the NBA title in 2008 and reached the finals in 2010. He’s been out since last season with a knee-ligament injury, and probably won’t be back before January.
Aside from the players in the deal, the Kings might send two future first round draft picks for Rondo, who is a four-time All-Star and is on a deal that ends in 2015, paying him $12 million a season. Thomas becomes a restricted free agent at the end of this season; McLemore is a first-round rookie signed for two more seasons and another two on a team option; Thornton is owed $16.7 million until 2015 and Thompson is signed until the 2016-2017 season for $6.5 million a year.
Good deal? Sounds bad for both sides. The Celtics aren’t in the business of adding more bad contracts, already carrying some excess weight from their dealings with the Nets. That might be a lot of players and some potential talent for supposedly their best player, but mixing things up that much ruins everything Brad Stevens had done since the start of the season, unless the Celtics don’t see the current group of guys or at least some of them as a foundation for the future.
For the Kings, it seems they’re tired of building through the draft, and prefer winning now, knowing that either way, the playoffs are a bit out of reach this season. They’ve already gotten Rudy Gay, and having Rajon Rondo, a healthy one at least, will give them a very strong starting five. However, giving up two first round draft picks for someone who is coming off ACL surgery and still hasn’t played a single game might be a bit much. Giving up on McLemore already also doesn’t sound reasonable.