4/08/12 Race to the MVP Ladder (Rondo Back in It)

Posted: April 7, 2012 in Uncategorized

Back In The Mix

April 8 — The best player on the hottest team in the league since the All-Star break is not LeBron James or Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant or Kevin Love.

With all respect to those other MVP candidates, the honor belongs to Rajon Rondo of the Boston Celtics, whose MVP campaign from earlier this season was derailed by injuries and a Celtics’ swoon. But Rondo and the Celtics have come on since the break — 15-7 since All-Star Weekend in Orlando — and have plenty of teams in the Eastern Conference fearing for their playoff lives.

No team in the East can boast more championship experience on its roster, and the Lakers and Spurs are the only teams in the league capable of matching the Celtics in that department.

The true beauty of Rondo’s surge, and in turn the Celtics’ post-All-Star rise, has been the unselfishness of their All-Star floor leader. Rondo’s[..]ists have spiked since the break (9.5 before and 12.6 since) while his points have taken a sizeable dip (14.8 before and 10.0 since).

Rondo averaged 13[..]ists in March, when the Celtics went 12-5, and has piled up double-digit[..]ists in all but two games since the break. He is sitting on a stretch that has seen him tally 10 or more[..]ists in 15 straight games.

According to Elias, Rondo is the first player in the Celtics’ storied history to accomplish that feat. The last player in the NBA to record at least 14 straight 10-assist games was the Suns’ Steve Nash, who totaled 14 in a row in 2004-05.

Again, Rondo is at 15 and counting … > 4/06/12 Race to the MVP Ladder (Rondo Back in It) - Photo posted in BX SportsCenter | Sign in and leave a comment below!

“He’s as good as I’ve seen him since he’s been in the league,” an Eastern Conference advance scout said. “It’s not often when you have a point guard in the game today who is willing to give up his own scoring for the good of the team. They have to get on this guy to shoot, to score and to be a little selfish with the ball. He and Steve Nash are the only guys like that in the league today.”

Current Rankings
Rank Status Player

1 Up LeBron James – LAST WK: 31 ppg | .566 fg% | 5.6 apg
2 Down Kevin Durant – LAST WK: 25.7 ppg | 52.6 fg% | 91.7 ft%
3 — Kobe Bryant – LAST WK: 26.5 ppg| 50.0 fg% | 45.0 3p%
4 — Kevin Love – LAST WK: 25.0 ppg | 26.0 3P% | 9.8 rpg
5 — Russell Westbrook – LAST WK: 24.7 ppg | 40.0 fg% | 96.0 ft%
6 — Dwyane Wade – LAST WK: 21.3 ppg | 46.2 fg% | 5.7 apg
7 Up Tony Parker – LAST WK: 15.7 ppg | 55.2 fg% | 4.0 apg
8 Up Chris Paul – LAST WK: 17.3 ppg | 42.3 fg% | 10.0 apg
9 — Rajon Rondo – LAST WK: 12.3 ppg | 6.0 rpg | 13.5 apg
10 Down Dwight Howard – LAST WK: 13.5 ppg | 11.5 rpg | 2.0 bpg

The next five: Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks; Josh Smith, Atlanta Hawks; Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers; Andrew Bynum, Los Angeles Lakers; Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns; Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls.

Falling out: Dirk Nowitzki

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