Boston Celtics

Rivers on Rondo's struggles: 'He's human'

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Rivers on Rondo's struggles: 'He's human'

By A.Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com

NEWARK, N.J. Celtics coach Doc Rivers isn't quite ready to say Rajon Rondo is in a slump.

"He's not playing great right now, but I don't think he's slumping," Rivers said.

Whatever you call it, one thing is clear: Rondo is not playing Rondo-esque basketball.

And the Celtics are worse off for it.

The latest rough outing for Rondo and the C's came in Monday's 88-79 loss to the New Jersey Nets.

It was the Celtics' third loss in their last four games, and dropped them into a tie with Chicago (47-18) for the best record in the Eastern Conference.

A number of Celtics players struggled in the Nets loss, but Rondo's woes stood out.

On Monday, he had two points while missing 9 of his 10 shots from the field. He also had nine assists, which marked the fifth straight game he failed to tally double-digit assists -- the longest such stretch for him this season. During that stretch, he's shooting 17-for-50, or 34 percent, from the field.

"I'm getting good looks. I'm getting shots, I'm getting floaters. I'm getting lay-ups. I'm just missing right now," Rondo said. "It's not mental. I'm just missing."

And when he's not making plays, the Celtics as a team tend to struggle.

"It's tough because he's the guy that makes us go," said Glen Davis, who had his fifth double-double of the season with 16 points and 14 rebounds. "He's the guy that makes us play the way we need to play. He didn't have a good game tonight. That's just how it is."

Despite Rondo's struggles of late, no one seems overly concerned.

"He's human," Rivers said. "He's going to go through stretches just like Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett. They've all gone through stretches."

Added Garnett: "There are nights when he's quadruple-doubled or whatever. Some nights, you have nights like this. It's all about how you come back from that."

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached atsblakely@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Survey: Tatum likely to have best career of incoming NBA rookies

Survey: Tatum likely to have best career of incoming NBA rookies

BOSTON -- Danny Ainge has maintained that if the Celtics had held onto the No. 1 pick in last June’s draft instead of trading down two spots, he still would have made Jayson Tatum his choice.
 
That confidence that Tatum will be an impact player in this league is clear in the recent NBA.com rookie survey, which was released Tuesday morning.
 
While Dallas’ Dennis Smith Jr. was voted as the most likely Rookie of the Year, Tatum and Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball were tied with 18.4 percent of the votes, as the players who would have the best careers from this NBA rookie class.
 
The survey was compiled earlier this month at Panini’s NBA Rookie Shoot in Tarrytown, N.Y., and consisted of questions being asked of 39 rookies.
 
Tatum, selected by Boston with the No. 3 overall pick, did not finish in the top five in any other categories.
 
However, he was among those players to receive some votes for Rookie of the Year; biggest steal of the draft, and best playmaker.

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Time to worry about Isaiah Thomas' hip injury?

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BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Time to worry about Isaiah Thomas' hip injury?

0:41 - A. Sherrod Blakely joins to discuss how concerned he is about Isaiah Thomas’ hip injury and the scan he will go through in September to make sure his hip is good to go.

5:40 - Tom Curran, Michael Holley, Tom Giles, and Kayce Smith break down the Patriots preseason game vs. the Texans, specifically Rob Gronkowski and Tom Brady’s playing time.

9:41 - Evan Drellich joins BST to discuss how John Farrell mismanaged the bullpen during the Red Sox loss to the Indians.

13:25 - With Roger Goodell reportedly receiving a 5-year extension, the BST crew talks about the relationship between the NFL owners and the commissioner.