Marc Weinreich
Thursday January 16th, 2014

Rajon Rondo spent a few hours with the Celtics' D-League affiliate on Wednesday to simulate game scenarios ahead of his expected return on Friday against the Lakers. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images) Rajon Rondo spent a few hours with the Celtics' D-League affiliate on Wednesday to simulate game scenarios. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said Thursday on Boston's 98.5 FM that barring any setback, point guard Rajon Rondo will make his season debut Friday when Boston hosts the Los Angeles Lakers.

Rondo has yet to play this year because of an ACL tear suffered last January.

Ainge said Rondo will likely play only five minutes per quarter, but that he will be in the starting lineup on Friday, according to Chris Forsberg of ESPN. Rondo spent part of Wednesday with the Celtics' NBDL affiliate, the Maine Red Claws, to simulate game-like situations during an intense workout in an effort to prepare for starting on Friday. Afterward, he took the team out to dinner as a "thank you" gesture.

Rondo's expected return comes approximately 11 months after he underwent surgery in February 2013 to repair the torn ACL. In his 38 appearances last season before going down with the injury, the 27-year-old four-time All-Star averaged 13.7 points, 11.1 assists, 5.6 rebounds and 1.8 steals in 37 minutes per game for the Celtics.

Boston is currently 14-26 heading into Friday's matchup at home against the Lakers. SI WIRE: Michael Jordan’s mother: Auctioned items are replicas

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