Storyline: Rajon Rondo Free Agency

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5 months ago via ESPN

On the point guard front, the Knicks are looking at several different veterans and hope to bring one in on a short-term deal. One free agent they’ve remained in touch with is Rajon Rondo, per sources. There is interest from both sides, sources say. Rondo has clashed with members of his previous organizations, but young players in Chicago and Sacramento rave about his ability to mentor and develop them. That’s what the Knicks are looking for — someone to help guide rookie Frank Ntilikina.
5 months ago via ESPN

Ian Begley: There remains mutual interest between the Knicks and free agent point guard Rajon Rondo, per league sources. Both sides are in touch as the Knicks continue to search for a veteran point guard. Rondo is likely one of several guards they are considering. New York has less than $2 million in cap space and a $4.3 million exception to offer free agents at the moment. But the club may create cap space via trade; the Knicks remain interested in trading Carmelo Anthony. There isn’t unanimous support in the organization for signing Rondo. But it’s worth noting that young players in Sacramento and Chicago have raved about Rondo’s mentorship and his ability to assist with player development. The Knicks are looking for a mentor to rookie Frank Ntilikina.
5 months ago via ESPN

Ian Begley: The Knicks continue to be in touch with Rajon Rondo. ESPN reported on the first day of free agency that the Knicks touched base with both Rondo and Darren Collison, though there was no substantive conversation regarding either player. The Knicks have continued to be in touch with Rondo, sources confirm. But there is no scheduled meeting yet. Some people in touch with the Knicks recently came away with the impression that NYK didn’t have strong interest in Rondo. The Knicks are looking for a point guard to mentor Frank Ntilikina, according to sources. Derrick Rose and Shelvin Mack are other point guards on their radar. The Knicks heard from the Celtics, who are open to trading Marcus Smart. The club’s interest in Smart is not know. The Knicks’ most-recent contact with Rondo was first reported by Basketball Insiders.

The Bulls insist they have made no formal decision on whether to pick up Rondo’s $13.4 million option or waive him for the $3 million guarantee by that deadline. But while the Bulls greatly value Rondo’s talent and teaching and mentoring ability, they also know their young point guards Kris Dunn and Cameron Payne need to play. And they also still have Jerian Grant. According to sources, one option being considered is waiving Rondo and trying to re-sign him at a lower salary.

For the first time, Rajon Rondo answered affirmatively — and without hesitation — when asked Tuesday if he hopes the Bulls pick up a team option for him to return next season. “Yeah, I like where I’m at. I think we have a really good team,” Rondo said. “We made a big trade halfway through the season. All the things this year with 45 different lineups, we still made it to the playoffs. Right now, just try to stay consistent as possible and develop some chemistry.”

Rondo said he became more of a locker room presence and mentor in Sacramento, having to tutor Cousins following his clashes with Karl. And he said his past brushes with coaches and teammates helped him mature and prepare him for that situation. “For me to be in that situation in my 10th year, what I’ve learned and grown from in the past, I was able to handle [the chaos],” Rondo said. “I was able to handle it a lot better than maybe Year 4 or 5. A lot of people criticize and get on DeMarcus a lot, but the man is a very young man and he hasn’t had too many great vets around him to teach him how to become a better professional.

Rondo said he would “love to continue to play with” Cousins, but for that to happen, he and the Kings need to “come together and figure out if we can work, but if not, I’m always in, I’m open. I’m open this summer and I look forward to having a great career.” As for his free-agent options this summer, Rondo said, “I want to see myself in a situation where guys want to grow, guys want to get better. I don’t want to be the hardest-working guy in the gym.”
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November 23, 2017 | 12:51 pm EST Update
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