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KC Johnson: Hoiberg said he has been giving Rondo an index card with an offensive package for that game and Rondo is making “a lot of calls on the fly.” This is how Hoiberg prefers his PGs to play—instinctively, making reads, not reliant on calls from sideline.
Nick Friedell: Rondo acknowledged that night to night the PG’s aren’t sure who is playing. They’re just taking it day by day.
KC Johnson: Goes without saying but Jerian Grant now starting at PG only solidifies Rondo’s desire to be elsewhere. Bulls have tried 2 starters over him now. This will be Jerian Grant’s 6th start. He also has 8 DNP-CD games. This is one weird Bulls team.
TMZ Sports spotted Rondo getting into a private car at his hotel before the Bulls played the Wizards — while the team bus was parked right outside. The timing is interesting since Rondo has voiced serious displeasure with Hoiberg over his recent 5 game benching. But a rep for the Bulls tells TMZ Sports there’s a perfectly good explanation for Rondo traveling solo. “On game days, Rajon often goes to the arena early before the team bus departs the hotel. We have few players who will do this when they want to get in extra work pregame.”
“They (media members) can drill me for the next four or five minutes,” Rondo said when there was a pause. “I haven’t had this much attention in awhile. I appreciate this. “Playing for the Bulls, playing for big organizations, like Boston, you’re going to be judged from Day One,” said Rondo. “It’s part of it. You signed up for it. I don’t mind being judged or pressure being put on myself. People have been counting me out since Day One. That doesn’t matter about being in a box. It’s not a great feeling as a player to play like that. You’re only as good as your coach thinks you are. That’s a big part of each individual’s success in the NBA. You look at James Harden and the year he’s having. (Mike) D’Antoni turned over the keys to him and he’s having his best year ever with the right personnel around him. Certain guys got an opportunity to shine and play without restraint and certain guys will rise to the occasion. And some won’t. Just trying to get a win.”
Taj Gibson: “It was great to have Rajon back on the floor.” Notes his coaching ability as a veteran player.
KC Johnson: Rondo: “You’re only as good as your coach thinks you are. That’s a big part of each individual’s success in the NBA.”
Rondo acknowledges “it’s a lot different than I anticipated” while discussing his role on the team. Doesn’t want to get into specifics, but clearly frustrated by being taken out of rotation.
Vincent Goodwill: Mirotic out with the flu. Rajon Rondo will be the first sub off the bench tonight
If Rondo ultimately plays with the second unit, Hoiberg may have to stagger Dwyane Wade’s minutes differently as he and Rondo haven’t paired effectively. “I’m not going to say that,” Rondo said, when asked if his strengths as a player are offset by the roster construction. “Am I going to think it? I thought a lot the last 24 hours. I thought a lot all season. I’m trying to figure out a way to help this team grow and get some wins.”
KC Johnson: Rondo indeed met w/ Gar Forman & John Paxson late Saturday. Save for Boylen incident, front office has lauded Rondo’s professionalism. Rondo told reporters he’d keep working, which is what meeting centered on. Hoiberg hasn’t ruled out using him w/ 2nd unit at some point. If Rondo remains out of rotation in February, would look for movement then. Until then, status quo.
Vincent Goodwill: One big thing from Rondo: “(Fred) said said I would be able to call a lot of plays.” Said things changed
KC Johnson: Does Rondo agree with Hoiberg that he’s slow? “I disagree. But that’s part of it. He’s the head coach. And we’re going to go with that.”
Vincent Goodwill: Rondo on explanation from Hoiberg: “Told me I’ve been looking slow the last five games.” Do you agree? “I disagree.”
Nick Friedell: Rondo, on if he feels he’s been singled out: “I’m Rajon Rondo. It is what it is.”
“It’s been really good,” Hoiberg said about his relationship with Rondo. “I talked to several coaches that had Rondo, who have been around him, including Rick Carlisle, who I played for in Indiana; he was an assistant under Larry Bird. He actually was the first guy who came up and talked to me after the trade happened and he said it’s going to be great. He said, ‘I think you guys have the perfect personalities for each other.’ From the minute we signed him and he came to Chicago, I knew he had a chance to be successful. He was very bought in to what we were trying to do, he wanted to come in and watch film; we worked a lot with his shot early in the process and he was around our guys and from the very first moment you could tell guys were going to gravitate toward him because of his voice, his veteran presence. Like all players, you learn a lot from the different situations you have been through. I’m sure that’s the case with Rajon.
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October 17, 2018 | 11:28 am EDT Update
The 2018-19 NBA season could very well be Kevin Durant’s final year with the Golden State Warriors. But while he’s still under contract, the defending champs are well within their right to kick off their recruitment of Durant early. “I don’t need [to be recruited], I don’t need to feel appreciated,” Durant told Yahoo Sports on Tuesday after a 108-100 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on opening night. “I don’t need anything extra [from the Warriors]. I’m just here to hoop and win games. I already know what this organization is about.”
“I think it’s simple for KD. I think he just tells people one time and one time only. He’ll deal with that when the time comes,” George told Yahoo Sports. “In his mind right now, they’re focusing on a three-peat, they’re focusing on defending that title. That’s the only thing the media needs to worry about. Regardless of if he stays or if he goes, he gave them three great years. That’s what the Bay has to be proud of.” The New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers will take a run at the back-to-back Finals MVP, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Personnel from the Clippers are expected to attend a high number of Warriors games this season, sources said. Rival executives are of the belief that Durant, unlike the previous two summers he hit free agency with the Warriors, might be swayed to leave the Bay Area this time around.
Zach Lowe: He’s not going back to Oklahoma City. I’d be dumbfounded if he joined LeBron. He must know the Warriors will always be Curry’s team. The social media slights will never stop as long as Durant is there. People who know Durant say part of him must crave the challenge of being the undisputed alpha dog and lead ball handler — of putting up a 32-10-8 stat line. Some of those same people wonder if he is a little scared of that challenge. A normal human would feel both of those things. But whoever revives the Knicks will become legend. They have a young co-star in Kristaps Porzingis who could take on more of the scoring burden as Durant ages.
“When you look at LeBron, every year you know he’s going to be great and his team is going to have a chance to win the title,” Davis said. “From here on out, I want to be in that conversation every year. Not every other year. Not every few years. Every year. If that’s going to happen, we’re going to have to win, and I’m going to have to be the most dominant player.” This was simply not the way Davis talked or felt when he was 21 or 22. But he’ll soon be 26, and this is his seventh year. This actually might be the beginning of his prime. He’s making statements like this not because he wants to create a sound bite or launch a marketing campaign, but because he has raised his expectations. It’s not lip service; his play shows that.
Those statements can be uncomfortable for some, especially with the Pelicans aware that he can be a free agent in 2020. More to the point, if Davis isn’t feeling the franchise next summer, when it can offer him a five-year extension for around $240 million, there’s going to be problems. Big problems. That reality is just below the surface on every decision that is taking place in New Orleans right now. Just being around the team and talking to its players, coaches and executives, the tension exists. To pretend it doesn’t isn’t genuine. That makes this season pretty important for the future of the franchise.
But for the most part, people might think different, but I actually had a great time in OKC. I think being so close with Russ [Westbrook] and PG [Paul George], and then all the other guys on the team, and the organization was very helpful in trying to make the transition smoothly. I had a great time in OKC. Nichols: So tell me about that transition, though. How did things go down over the summer after the season? Did you come to them? Did they come to you? Anthony: We had a real conversation. I had a real conversation with Coach [Billy] Donovan, and we had all summer to try to figure it out. And they told me they was looking in another direction, and I know how the game works.