It’s hard to imagine if the NBA’s Western Conference can get any better than they already are but that’s exactly what took place last night. The Rajon Rondo sweepstakes has come to an end and the all-star point guard is moving from Boston to Dallas.
Rondo is a Maverick.
The Celtics are also sending Dwight Powell to Dallas for Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson and draft picks. Boston will also receive a conditional first-round pick in the 2015 draft and a second-rounder in 2016, as well as a $12.9 million trade exception.
Does this make the Mavericks the automatic favorites to come out of the West?
No…at least not yet. We’ll have to wait and see how the new starting five play with one another but there is no doubt that Rondo compliments everyone on the roster.
The projected starting lineup includes Rajon Rondo, Monta Ellis, Chanlder Parsons, DirkNowitzki, and Tyson Chandler.
The Mavericks were already legitimate contenders but with the new acquisition Rondo may very well serve as the missing piece to the puzzle. The West is better than ever before so it’s difficult to label one team as the favorite but now, nobody can take a night off if Dallas is on the other end of the court.
With Rondo the Mavericks have instantly become a better defensive team, which in turn will improve their transition game with Rondo making the steal and distributing the rock to either Ellis or Parsons in the transition. This makes for a high-octane offense.
At 28 years old, Rondo is averaging 8.3 points and a league-best 10.8 assists per game this season. He plays with tenacity and wears his heart on his sleeve each and every night. It’s that spirit that makes him one of the toughest to play against. Rondo’s weakness comes in his perimeter game as his jumper can be better. It’s a part of his game that he works on, and if he ever masters it, he’ll become unstoppable.
The likes of Damian Lillard, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, Tony Parker, Mike Conley, and Step Curry will make it challenging for Rondo. The West Coast is loaded with point guards and you can make an argument that all of the Point Guards listed are offensively better than Rondo, which is why the Mavs are not the obvious favorites to come out of the West.
The Mavs have posted an impressive 19-8 record which only has them at the sixth slot in the Western Conference. Don’t get it twisted, it’s a significant upgrade and he will make all of his teammates better. Rondo is the type of player who relishes big opportunities and he will rise to the challenge.
Rondo will make his debut this Saturday when the Mavericks play host to the defending champions.