The Dallas Mavericks made the first big trade of the NBA season on Thursday, acquiring Rajon Rondo from the Boston Celtics.
The trade looks like this:
- Dallas gets: Rajon Rondo, Dwight Powell
- Boston gets: Brandon Wright, Jameer Nelson, Jae Crowder, 2015 1st-round pick, 2016 2nd-round pick
Everyone knew the Celtics would trade Rondo. He’s a free agent after this year and the team is in full rebuilding mode.
But the fact that he’s going to Dallas so long before the trade deadline is a mild surprise.
The NBA world is all over the map on this trade. Some think it’s a steal for Dallas.
Another NBA exec on Rondo trade: “Hell of a discount for Dallas. Like finding a mint painting at a yard sale.”
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) December 18, 2014
Others think Rondo is going to disrupt a team that’s already ranked No. 1 in offensive efficiency. For these people, the main concern is that Rondo isn’t the same player that he was before he tore his ACL.
Grantland’s Zach Lowe wrote this brutal paragraph about Rondo’s collective stats in the last two years:
There is very little evidence beyond inflated assist totals that the present-day version of Rondo is a helpful player — on either end. Dallas gave up real things for an overrated defender who wouldn’t seem able to improve upon an offence already challenging league records. Rondo will generate some steals and offensive rebounds, but the Mavs are already quite good at getting both of those things.
Is this a matter of motivation? Will Rondo improve that dramatically if he’s on a competitive team with other veterans who are trying to win now? Or is he just an older, worse version of himself?
It’s a scary proposition for Dallas. They’re not only betting that he won’t disrupt their league-best offence, they’re betting that he’s still actually good.
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