Rajon Rondo knows he would have been the villain if Boston had lost Game 2 and ultimately the series. He knows talk-show hosts would have taken a crowbar to his reputation and columnists would have pointed their stubby fingers his way. He knows what he did was stupid and he knows everyone else knows that, too.
He also knows his suspension can become little more than a footnote if he serves up a healthy dose of double-doubles or triple-doubles through the rest of the postseason while helping the Celtics on a long run. He knows that, hell, if he improbably leads the Celtics to a second title in five seasons, the same talk-show hosts will wax poetically about the point guard who doesn’t just understand the angles for passing lanes, but manufactures them.
Rondo has a way of rising to the occasion. During nationally televised games he’s almost always a monster. In the playoffs he weaves triple-doubles at an astounding rate. And after coming off a suspension and hearing most of Boston discussing his stupidity for a couple days, I can guarantee you Rondo’s ready in Game 2. If he doesn’t have a huge performance tomorrow night, I’ll shave the Hawks symbol into my head and wear a Zaza Pachulia jersey to Game 4.