After temporarily being brought up in a wave of rumors, Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo was assured by the franchise Wednesday that he won't be dealt before Thursday's trade deadline, Sam Amick of USA Today reports.
According to Bill Duffy, Rondo's agent, the guard spoke Wednesday morning with Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, who insisted to the guard that rumors of his possible departure this week were untrue.
On Tuesday, ESPN's Chris Broussard reported that, "Rival GMs insist Rondo's available," adding speculation that a deal with the Atlanta Hawks could be a good fit. Maybe Ainge really did make Rondo available for a short period of time in recent days, but if so, it appears he's backed off from that effort.
Signed through 2014-15, Rondo is the obvious cornerstone for the next competitive Celtics team as the likes of Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce wind down, but he's sidelined for the remainder of this season with a torn ACL. It's intriguing to wonder what teams might've given up for a player that wouldn't even be able to contribute until autumn.
Fab Melo being shopped?
The Celtics have made rookie center Fab Melo available in talks as they look to bolster their roster for the remainder of the season, Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reports. He adds that Boston's focus thus far has been on perimeter help with Rondo on the mend.
Melo, the 22nd overall pick in last year's draft, has appeared in just three games with the Celtics while spending significant time with the D-League's Maine Red Claws. His performance with Maine has been up and down, but the flashes of potential have been there, including a 15-point, 16-rebound, 14-block (!) performance in December.
By dealing Melo for help, the Celtics could keep their current rotation intact while bringing in help. Other trade chips include Avery Bradley and Courtney Lee, but Boston would presumably prefer to keep those players in the fold.
Imagining a Celtics roster blow up
Over at CelticsBlog, SB Nation's Celtics blog (duh), Jeff Clark imagines what Boston's roster might look like if the team traded both Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in separate deals. Pierce gets shipped out in a three-team deal that brings Hawks forward Josh Smith to Boston, while Garnett finally gives his blessing to a deal with the Clippers.
The end result? A roster centered around Rondo, Smith, Bradley, Eric Bledsoe, DeAndre Jordan, Jeff Green and Brandon Bass. Clark says, "I'm not sure if that's a championship squad, but it does at least sound like a competitive one."
Celtics fans, would you be okay with that sort of core going forward?