Lakers news: Impact of Rajon Rondo’s broken thumb, out for 6+ weeks

Los Angeles Lakers, Rajon Rondo (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Lakers, Rajon Rondo (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Los Angeles Lakers guard Rajon Rondo will be out for 6-8 weeks

If the Los Angeles Lakers can survive this season with a deep playoff run, Rob Pelinka will be probably the first unanimous winner of the NBA Executive of the Year award.

The signing of Dwight Howard made him a lock, but signing Dion Waiters and J.R. Smith now shows the blueprint of what NBA teams want when it comes to preparation.

It was bad enough for backcourt depth that Avery Bradley opted to sit out of the NBA’s restart in order to be with his family. On Sunday night, more bad news struck concerning backup point guard, Rajon Rondo.

Based on the reports coming out of Orlando, it looked like Rondo had found the fountain of youth.

Now we may never know.

According to ESPN’s Dave McMenamin, Rajon Rondo broke his right thumb in practice and will be out six-to-eight weeks due to surgery.

The Los Angeles Lakers will probably be without Rondo for much longer considering that he has to leave the bubble and will have to pass COVID-19 quarantine protocols again.

Lakers fans have debated the level of Rajon Rondo’s importance all season long. One Lake Show Life article openly stating Rondo getting an average of 20 minutes would kill the Los Angeles Lakers chances of winning a NBA title brought quite a buzz.

If you go by statistics, most would say Rondo has had a decent season with the Lakers with averages of 7.1 points, 5.0 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game with shooting splits of .418/.328/.659. But taking a closer look through the eye test, most looked at Rondo’s 3-point shooting and moaned while others watched his blown defensive assignments and groaned.

The highlight of Rajon Rondo’s season was when the Lakers destroyed the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road without LeBron James, Danny Green or Anthony Davis. Rondo collaborated with Kyle Kuzma to shock the NBA world winning a game that most didn’t think was possible. But the most complete game was against the Phoenix Suns, when he scored 23 points while knocking down four of five attempts from downtown.

With Bradley’s decision and Rondo’s injury, the Lakers Nation have a list of things to look for going forward.

  • Alex Caruso and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are now in the hot seat to produce and more will be asked from them through to at least the Western Conference Finals.
  • For the longest time, it was believed that J.R. Smith and Dion Waiters were just players to use if the Los Angeles Lakers were in a bind. Rajon Rondo’s injury along with the uncertainty of COVID-19 certainly applies.

For the fans that are wondering about Rondo’s return, the best-case scenario on the eight-week window will eliminate the 8 game seeding part of the season.

With an eight-game regular season before the playoffs, the Los Angeles Lakers are really not worried about making the postseason with a 49-14 record and a 5.5 game lead over the Los Angeles Clippers.

While some of the 22 teams will fight it out to earn and maintain postseason bids, the Lakers have the second-best record in the NBA.

Let’s assume that Rondo can make it back by September, the Los Angeles Lakers would be in the Western Conference Finals when he makes his return, that is if they get there. Even if he did return, more than likely his conditioning would be an issue.

Rajon Rondo won’t make or break the Lakers chances in a playoff series, but the rotation will feel the strain until he’s back.

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