Just a perfect example of Rondoianism and what makes this certain Celtics crew special. At once Rondo’s acutely aware of the circumstances surrounding his team — that his teammates are old and battered, that this “one-day-on, on-day-off” schedule for the first four games of the Sixers series should be especially difficult — and defiantly stubborn against anyone curious enough to bring up the Celtics’ obvious flaws. He knows he’s not a good shooter, but he still considers himself the best point guard in the world (and I’ll be damned if he’s not right on certain days). He knows his teammates could go into cardiac arrest any day, but he still considers the Celtics the world’s greatest team.
This is the exact confidence that allowed the Celtics to advance to the 2010 Finals after shitting the bed for the final 50-some odd games of the regular season. They know they aren’t perfect, but they don’t really care. No matter what conspires against them, they still believe they should win every basketball game in which they compete. No matter how many times they lose, they think they’ll win the next one. No matter how old they get, they believe they’re young enough. No matter how many mistakes they make — and Rondo made plenty yesterday, accumulating seven turnovers to go along with his obscene triple double — they’re convinced they’ll operate with perfect precision when it matters most. That can be frustrating at times when they make their lives more difficult than they need to. But that frustration often gives way to brilliant responses to adversity.
One of the fourth-quarter plays yesterday when Rondo curled behind Paul Pierce for a jump shot was originally designed for Ray Allen. But Rondo — whose perimeter shooting widely induces cringing among NBA fans — actually asked Rivers if he could shoot the ball himself. Rivers for some reason agreed, and you can call me an asshole if that ball didn’t splash through the nets. By all measurements Rondo should not have requested that shot. By all measurements the Celtics should not be playing so well. But the shot went in, didn’t it?