As if Rondo’s 29 points, 18 rebounds and 13 assists weren’t enough, he’s also become his team’s leader. (Yahoo!)
“I think the player has to earn it,” Rivers said in the hallway. “You could see how good he was. You could see how talented he was. But every time he had a bad moment – a bad game, a flare-up where he lost his temper with another player – he would have to win that credibility full-time.
“To me, what Rondo has done is this: He’s done it with his play, and he’s done it with his actions. That allows people to buy in, because they have to buy in. You have to sell that to three guys like that. They have to believe in you all the time. That took a lot of work by Rondo. Last year was up and down – even in the playoffs it was up and down.
“This year it’s been constant, and I think that’s been the biggest swing. If you can convince Kevin Garnett to follow you, then you’ve done a hell of a job.”
“And Kevin believes in him.”
Doc’s comment about Garnett (“If you can convince Kevin Garnett to follow you, then you’ve done a hell of a job”) isn’t at all saying that Garnett’s a troublemaker who limits team chemistry and tears apart locker rooms. On the contrary, he’s alluding to Garnett’s unbelievable leadership. Garnett has been a leader all of his career, both verbally and with his play. He plays harder than anyone else, he lets his teammates know when they’re out of line. Garnett is a classic leader, in every sense of the word.
And he now follows Rajon Rondo. Anybody else need more proof that we’re witnessing the evolution of a very special career?