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On Monday night, Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo sent out the following message via Twitter:
— Rajon Rondo (@RajonRondo) January 14, 2014
Of course it didn’t take long for someone to decipher that number: it amounts to approximately 338 days, the time that will have elapsed on Friday since last February 13, the day Rondo underwent surgery to repair his torn ACL. Rondo hasn’t played an NBA game since January 25 in Atlanta, but it now appears that he could be returning against none other than the Los Angeles Lakers.
Nobody in the Celtics organization has confirmed that Rondo will, in fact, play on Friday, but he had said earlier that he wanted to return before the All-Star break, the weekend of February 14-16, and head coach Brad Stevens had suggested that he would come back “sooner rather than later.”
The day of Rondo’s return can’t come soon enough for Boston, which is mired in a nine-game losing streak and has fallen to fourth place in the Atlantic Division. The Celtics will face division-leading Toronto on Wednesday before the Lakers come to town, and a season debut by Rondo would, at the very least, spice up the Association’s fiercest rivalry, which has fallen on hard times with the C’s and Lakers both looking like lottery teams and Kobe Bryant already absent.
Rondo has led the NBA in assists the past two seasons and, while he can’t be expected to return to his top form immediately, he should provide a boost as the Celtics try to hold onto their rapidly fading playoff hopes. In 38 games last season, he averaged 13.7 points, 11.1 assists and 5.6 rebounds. At the very least, we know he’s smart enough to play the role of floor general and give the Celtics the leadership at the point that they’ve been lacking all season long.
Teaching freshman algebra with Ms. Oshodi at Burke high school this AM. Thx for having me pic.twitter.com/vNbD0Z3X
— Rajon Rondo (@RajonRondo) November 6, 2012