Rajon Rondo spoke for the first time ever as a member of the Clippers with ESPN, and he's looking forward to the opportunity.
Rondo knows what the Clippers need from him - make life easier for Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Not only that, but there's a big level of vocal leadership the team is expecting from him. Rondo was traded to the team for Lou Williams, who was previously one of the Clippers' veteran leaders.
What Rondo has left in the tank this season remains to be seen. In 27 games on the Atlanta Hawks he averaged: 3.9 PPG, 3.5 APG, on 40/38/50 shooting. It's been a very rough year for him, but this season has shown that many veteran players still have a lot in the tank.
Rondo has played some with the best players in the NBA: LeBron James, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce Dirk Nowitzki, and more. He's never been on a team with Kawhi Leonard before, and he's excited for the opportunity.
Clippers head coach Ty Lue has a very special relationship with Rajon Rondo; Doc Rivers frequently calls Lue the "Rondo Whisperer". This will be the first time Rondo has played for Lue as his head coach, and it'll add an extra layer to their relationship.
"It's fun," Rondo said. "Me and Lue go way back, about 10 years ago he let me stay in his house in Vegas. Our relationship has always been tight. He's been a guy who's always been genuine and honest with me, even when we're playing cards or gambling. It's the type of guy he is, a great person."
Rondo has yet to make his debut for the Clippers, and the anticipation is growing high. Kawhi Leonard has frequently struggled with handling the ball in clutch moments this season, and fans are hoping he can help alleviate that problem. Whether he can be that X-Factor this season remains to be seen.