Rick Carlisle Rumors
Days after Rajon Rondo praised Rick Carlisle as “a champion” he respected, the Mavericks’ coach returned the sentiment. “I’ve recommended Rondo to a couple of teams that have called me about him the last couple of years,” Carlisle said. “As a competitor, you’re not going to find a guy better or more resourceful. He really has adjusted his game constantly over the years. It didn’t work out here for various reasons. It was just not a good fit. I wished him well when he left.”
“Guys are learning to play in an environment that is very realistic, as opposed to the nirvana that he’s provided here for close to two decades,” Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. “The one thing that I think this period should point out to historians of the game is his level of greatness. It’s just another strong indication of how great he has been [and] is and the kind of impact he has. When he’s out there on a consistent basis, it’s a game-changer.” There is plenty of proof of that. Start with the Mavs’ 15 playoff appearances, 12 50-win seasons, two Finals trips and one title during a stretch in which Nowitzki had more than twice as many All-Star selections as all his teammates put together. Nowitzki, the sixth-leading scorer in NBA history, ranks seventh in win shares, one spot behind Duncan.
Dwain Price: Yesterday Rick Carlisle said Dirk will miss the next 2 games. Today he said Dirk will miss the next 3 games. Uh-uh.
He’s only played five of 16 games. “We have every expectation that it’s not serious,” owner Mark Cuban said. “It’s dramatically better. That’s why he played the other night (in Cleveland). He just felt it again, so there’s no reason to take a chance. We’re just being cautious.” Said Carlisle: “The important thing is that we’re doing the right things to get him to a full recovery. He’s come a long way in a four-plus week period. But it’s an Achilles strain and it’s taking time. My hope is that it can be complete sometime in December, sooner than later. But we just got to be patient with it. He’s too important to us. If we have to play without him, we’ll play without him.”
“He’s a champion,” Rondo said. “You can’t take that from me. You can’t take that from him. It just didn’t work out, that two champions couldn’t figure it out. “I have a lot of respect for Rick. Just because things don’t go well doesn’t mean you hate a person or that the media perception is right. Rick and I had a good relationship in the beginning. We tried to work it out. I worked with him every day on my shot. We watched film together. Not every marriage works. It was a learning process.”
Much of that history has been summarized negatively. Rondo hasn’t addressed it much, but he ran over and shook Carlisle’s hand and those of the entire Mavericks’ staff before a Kings-Mavericks game last season. And Carlisle has been complimentary of Rondo’s post-Dallas play. “I kind of laid low after the situation. I didn’t want to get involved with it. People wrote what they wanted to write,” Rondo said. “But I developed one of my closest friends in life there in Monta Ellis. I don’t look at (Dallas) as a negative situation. It just didn’t work out on the court for our personalities and the team concept.”