A Rajon Rondo trade has been talked about for many months, but the rumor that he is heading elsewhere took new meaning when legendary Boston reporter and ESPN commentator Jackie McMullan weighed in on the topic.
Apparently the show "Around the Horn", that McMullan regularly appears on, uploads clips in between segments to YouTube, as part of their "Behind the Horn" footage. During one of these segments on August 27, McMullan said Rondo has requested a trade, and vowed not to come back to the Celtics when he becomes a free agent next year.
When Frank Isola raised the topic of trading Rondo, MacMullan replied, "Oh, I hope so. Just get it done. And it will happen because he's told them he wants out. And no one believes me, but that's the truth."
She went on to ask, "where do you get .80 cents on the dollar for him," inspiring the panel of commentators to start discussing trade possibilities, Isola brought up the Clippers, to which McMullan says that Clips coach Doc Rivers is "done with Rondo," and doesn't want to "deal with the guy."
It seems that finding a deal for Rondo is going to be tough at this point in the offseason, but, if what McMullan says is true, then they are going to lose big if they don't deal him soon. If he plans to walk away from Boston after this season, then they will get nothing for him then.
So, a 'fair' trade is probably out of the question at this point. It stand to reason the Celtics would be better to make a close-to-fair deal go down than wait and be left empty handed.
Here are three teams that Boston could possibly deal with.
1. The New York Knicks: they have some interesting pieces in Tim Hardaway Jr., Iman Shumpert,Cleanthony Early, and Shane Larkin that they could include in a deal along with future draft picks. Rondo may be willing to sign long term with New York to play alongside Carmelo Anthony on a club ran by Phil Jackson.
2. The Detroit Pistons: Everyone knows the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting the results to change. Greg Monroe and Josh Smith in Detroit is not working out. Rondo, who is friends with Smith, may stay with the Pistons to play with his friend. Monroe wants out of Detroit, so this might work.
3. The Phoenix Suns: The Suns are guard rich, but if the Celtics want to get a player close to Rondo's talent level, then they could pursue a trade for Eric Bledsoe who is in the last year of his contract with the Suns. Bledsoe is ready to leave Phoenix, too.