Boston Celtics

Rondo: The near-misses

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Rondo: The near-misses

I'm going to have something a little bigger on the Rondo situation tomorrow. You know, just to change things up a bit. In the meantime, here's another little diversion from the Rondo talk with a little something about Rondo.

As we speak, Rondo is the NBA leader in total assists, with 420. However, it's only a matter of time before he loses this title. The way it looks now, Greivis Vasquez will have surpassed him by next week, and by the end of the year, Rondo's name won't be visible on the list of top NBA assisters. (Rasheed Wallace approved.)

On the other hand, I'm willing bet he finishes the year as the NBA's leader in triple doubles.

To that, a lot of people will say: "BLSRHF! Who cares? They were 2-3 when Rondo tripled doubled this year. It's meaningless!"

But that's not true. They aren't meaningless. Because triple doubles are awesome. Are they more important than winning? Of course not. But they're still great.

Seriously, how many stat lines are cool enough to get name dropped in raps?

Perfect game? No hitter?

Anything else?

I'm talking single game stat lines. Not season.

Maybe "straight sets"? I'm almost positive that I've heard Jay-Z rap about beating someone in straight sets, but Google isn't backing me up.

Anyway, the world loves triple doubles, and Rondo currently leads the NBA with five. That's well ahead of LeBron, Nicholas Batum and Jose Calderon, who are tied for second with two.

Of course, there's always the chance that LeBron goes off and ends up with, like, 10. But the safe bet is that Rondo finishes on top. This would be the second straight year he leads the league in this category. This, after finishing second to LeBron in the two previous seasons.

And how about this: Over the last three years, Rondo has 14 triple doubles. Nobody else has more than six. The next three guys on the list (LeBron, Iguodala, Westbrook) have combined for only 13.

For his career, Rondo has 18 triple doubles. That ties him with Kobe four fourth place on the active list behind Jason Kidd, LeBron and Grant Hill.

Maybe the craziness thing of all?

Rondo missed an additional three triple doubles by ONE rebound this season.

That means he was three random rebounds away from having eight triple doubles in 38 games!

And OK, that's enough. Let's not go down that road. After all, three of the five triple doubles he did get featured exactly 10 rebounds, so you could also say that he was three random rebounds from having two. Bottom line: He finished with five. That's still amazing.

And certainly something we're all going to miss over the course of this Rondoless season.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Photo of Celtics' 1963 White House visit recalls a simpler time

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Photo of Celtics' 1963 White House visit recalls a simpler time

As the controversy raged Saturday over President Donald Trump's tweet rescinding the White House invitation to Golden State Warriors' star Stephen Curry, a tweeted photo recalling a simpler time for sports team's presidential visits appeared. 

The nostalgic Twitter account @the_60s_at_50 posted a photo from the Celtics' visit to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave and its principal occupant, John F. Kennedy, on Jan. 31, 1963. JFK had invited his hometown NBA team into the Oval Office for what seemed to be a spur-of-the-moment visit.

A newspaper account of the visit was also posted. The defending NBA champion Celtics were in the Washington area to play the Cincinnati Royals at the University of Maryland's Cole Field House that night and had been taking a tour of the White House when Kennedy invited them in. 

All the team members were there except for star center Bill Russell, who, of course, experienced incidents of racism in Boston that were well-documented. However, Russell's absence was blamed on him oversleeping. His teammates said they didn't know they would meet Kennedy on the tour.  

And yes, that's Celtics legend - and CSN's own - Tommy Heinsohn second from right. Coach Red Auerbach is next to the President on the left, Bob Cousy is next to Auerbach and John Havlicek is the first player in the second row on the left.