Rajon Rondo came into the league during the 2006-2007 season. He played in 68 games for the Boston Celtics, becoming a starter a season later. Rondo left Boston during the 2014-2015 season and bounced around to different teams each year after. Now, he’s on the Lakers as one of the veteran players on a team full of young talent.
While Rondo hit his peak while he was in Boston, he still has something to offer to the Lakers. In addition to LeBron, he has championship-level experience. Last season, Rondo averaged 8.3 points, 8.2 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. It’s unlikely that the Lakers will need a ton of scoring from him, but we could see the assist column tick up for him with the like of Brandon Ingram and LeBron James to throw the ball to. He got off to the right start in Thursday night’s opening game loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, finishing with 13 points, 11 assists and four rebounds.
With that in mind, Rondo can have a huge impact on this team. Many of the players are still in the early stages of their careers, which gives them the opportunity to just learn as much as they can from the veteran players. Where Rondo can have a huge impact is by helping Lonzo Ball get to that next step. We’ve seen flashes of Lonzo’s potential, but he still has work to do to get there.
Rondo and Ball have the same sort of skillset, too. Neither of them shoot particularly well, especially at the free throw line, but they’re both excellent passers. The court vision between the two of them will get the Lakers plenty of good looks and hopefully they can convert those looks into points to make it all worthwhile.
LeBron is the obvious player who will have the largest impact on the team this season, but that doesn’t discount what Rondo can do on the court. This team is an exciting one for a variety of reasons now. Lakers fans have had an interest in the new players for a few years now, but adding the likes of LeBron and Rondo to the mix allows for more of an impact this season.
All-in-all, Rondo should have a positive impact on this team provided he stays healthy. It’ll be interesting to see how Luke Walton ultimately manages playing time for both Ball and Rondo. Since both players aren’t shoot-first point guards, it could be more worthwhile to stagger their minutes instead of playing them together too often. This season is definitely one to look forward to.