Sunday 17th December 2017,
The Hoop Doctors

Danny Ainge Expected to Shop Rajon Rondo

RondoBoston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge has maintained all along he will not be trading Rajon Rondo.

He was lying.



According to ESPN’s Chad Ford, the Celtics are expected to shop the All-Star point guard once he’s healthy:

All three of the teams ahead of them have at least one young player they can conceivably build around. The Celtics? Rajon Rondo could be that building block. But he turns 28 in February, has posed chemistry issues in the past and there is an increasing belief among NBA circles that GM Danny Ainge will use him, once healthy, to get multiple assets back. So the chances that he’s the Celtics’ cornerstone moving forward look slim.

Using the same logic, I’ve been called crazy. And stupid. Asked what I was smoking. Once, someone even asked me what I was snorting. Guess that’s the risk you run when suggesting Ainge isn’t entirely truthful.

But here we are. Rondo is nearing his return, and the question can finally be posed: What’s next?

The Celtics are 13-26 on the season, or right on schedule. They’re tanking. Ainge would never cop to it. Rookie head coach Brad Stevens would never admit it. But that’s what they’re doing.

When Rondo returns, he makes them better. Much better. That’s a problem in the dismal Eastern Conference, where the Celtics are still only three games back of the final playoff spot.

If they really want to remain bad, they’ll trade Rondo for future assets, expiring contracts and those draft picks Ainge loves so much. Then they’re free to continue to tanking.

Going on 28, Rondo isn’t the future of this team. By the time they’re ready to legitimately contend again, he’ll be 30 or 31, or older. That’s assuming he doesn’t leave during summer 2015, when he becomes an unrestricted free agent—which he could. If the Celtics aren’t contenders by the end of next season (likely), he could spurn them in free agency, leaving Ainge and friends with nothing.

Do the Celtics want that? Absolutely not. They want to tank and receive value in return for Rondo, so expect them, at some point, to trade him.

When? And where?

Let’s not even begin to fathom where. The trade market is a fickle business and until Rondo is officially available, pinpointing a destination is impossible.

As for when, I’d say soon. It all depends.

Ainge is taking a risk here, you know, waiting. He could have flipped Rondo for a serious return while he was injured, but he’s apparently banking on him returning to form and netting a higher value. With the way point guards have been dropping like flies—Russell Westbrook, Derrick Rose, Chris Paul, Jrue Holiday, Steve Nash, Deron Williams, etc.—the Celtics may not be able to move Rondo so easily if he suffers another injury upon return.

But hopefully, that won’t be an issue. Rondo will return as his old self and inevitably become part of the ever-churning rumor mill.

Just like Ainge and the Celtics always planned.

We think.

Dan Favale is a firm believer in the three-pointer as well as the notion that defense doesn’t always win championships. His musings can be found at in addition to

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  • Draftdog

    This should be interesting, if Ainge decides to get rid of Rondo. You will see some really creative scenarios published, if not presented. A healthy Rondo to a title contender could be extremely valuable. However those teams don’t usually have high draft picks laying around, so third party involvement is likely.

  • Robert Todd

    He should go to the heat he could be a great backup the wade

    • Kre fish

      Do you know what you’re talking about, you sound like an idiot

    • Leo

      He plays Point not SG.

    • phelix

      why would he go too the heat if its already been proven that he doesn’t have good chemistry with Ray Allen
      Come on bro think

    • Micah

      Wade is a 2 guard … Rondo plays the 1. He would take Chalmers spot …

    • Celliott215

      Not only is he a 2 guard but wade is getting older and isnt as valuable anymore

    • huh


    • Sean

      Rondo himself said he wouldn’t join the heat

    • Ryan Mitchell Howard

      If Rondo were to go to the Heat (which he definitely won’t) Chalmers would be the one riding the bench, not him. And D Wade is a shooting guard! Do you even watch basketball? In my opinion The Kings would be the perfect place for Rondo. Him, Rudy, Maclemore, and Cousins. That’s a championship team if you ask me! I am a little biased as a Kings fan, but still! It was rumored a few weeks ago so it’s possible. Fingers crossed!

      • David k

        That’s a fight waiting to happen

  • DJ

    Rondo could go to the Raptors, they can get Kyle Lowry in return as well as draft picks..

    • Dex

      Rather have Lowry. Hes having a breakout season. Go Raps!!

  • disqus_nN8B6adROG

    If Rajon Rondo do get traded the Knicks should get him put him next to Melo another superstar trade Raymond Felton to the Celtics.

    • king

      trade amare for rondo amd then they can use their amnesty on him making cap space

    • Ben210

      To bad NY doesnt have draft picks.

    • phelix

      Who in their right mind would actually want Raymond Felton anymore. knicks better trade Felton with some other valuable assets which they don’t really have right now

  • Guru

    Rondo green for Monroe, Villanueva, and Jennings and a 2nd rounder

  • Ben210

    Not a Laker fan but i think LA Will be a top destination for Rondo. Celtics can unload a few contracts if they trade for Gasol, who has an expiring contract.

  • Dmont

    Rondo to pacers for hill, granger. Add a third team and it might happen. # pacer 4 life

    • cpierce

      Not a Pacer fan but that’s actually a pretty good proposal. Both sides can win

    • muddywaterz317

      George aint goin anywhere that would throw the team chemistry all out of wack and thats a big part of why their doin so well but i love that trade tho. Can Rondo play D tho?

      • HiRihanna

        He’s arguably the best defensive point guard when healthy, but I agree trading hill would mess with the chemistry plus they’d have virtually no shooters besides Paul George if they made this move. But long term rondo will be should be better than him if he stays healthy.

        • Andrew

          Rondos one of the most overrated defensive players. He just likes to gamble for steals. Last year he was horrendous.

        • HiRihanna

          True he does gamble a lot on D but many players do and when you gamble you’re not always gonna be lucky. Horrendous is a bit steep tho, he doesn’t let up on the defensive end & the celtics weren’t the same without him on the floor. Plus after CP3 I can’t think of another point guard I’d rather have from a defensive stand point.

  • Motts44

    He should go to the pacers for gorge hill and Danny granger and possibly a draft pick. Best trade possible for the celtics.

  • hadenuf

    C’mon. Really? This is OLD news, as in it began when Ray hit the road to South Beach & became the non-rumor truth when The Truth & KG took their fading skills to Brooklyn. Crawford was THE point option for the team & Brooks is possibly a diamond in the rough. Back when the C’s climbed to 4-4 & then 10-12, the tank thing seemed possibly unfounded. But after to total no-show effort in 3 of 4 quarters against Houston, I’m thinking maybe not so much. My bet is Jeff Green, the C’s disappointment of the century is also gone.

  • Kofi Williams

    Get rid of Jeff Green too. Don’t keep players that could be better (career wise) somewhere else. Jordan Crawford was the latest since KG and the truth. Just build picks that’s how you sustain a franchise now. Thunder, Pacers and Spurs show this. Other teams are learning (Sixers , Bobcats). But seriously between Embild, Wiggins, Parker, Randle, Smart, and probably Exum you want one of them and that’s what you build your team around. No need for keeping players from Docs era.

  • Jony

    I want Rondo to contend with another team. I personally think that he is the best PG in the league and he shouldn’t squander his talent in a losing team.

  • Chuck Da buck

    The only trade I could see happening is Detroit would give up Drummond and this years draft pick. If not that maybe Monroe and a player and picks.

    • Reason to Believe

      Detroit would never give up Drummond for a PG coming off a torn ACL and they already gave their 1st round pick to the Bobcats.

  • Chuck Da buck

    Another trade ainge might do is Isaiah Thomas macklemore nd two first round picks.

    • John625

      Yup sac wants to pair rondo with cousins and gay

  • Lisa C

    I will be glad when he’s back and all this ridiculous speculation ends. I can’t tell if Ainge is really that dumb or the media is making him look that way.

  • Million_dollar_lyfstyle

    Rondo for lin n asik and some picks

  • Cjc5

    Rondo won’t be moved what have u been smoking. How many times have these rumors been thrown around. After the Crawford trade, it’s definately not happening

  • CollegeStudent

    The Celtics should try to get Lance Stephenson for Rondo. The Pacers can move Hill to the 2, and put Rondo at the 1. The problem is, I doubt the Pacers will change their chemistry so drastically. However, this benefits them because they would have to overpay for Stephenson to keep him anyways.

    • David k

      Pacers aren’t moving anyone but if they do its Granger and copeland

  • Jake

    I’d say Rondo and Kris Humphries to Detroit for Brandon Jennings, Monroe and a 2nd round pick.

  • Nana Marilyn

    Getting rid of AINGE is the only thing that makes any sense to ME…