Don’t count on Rajon Rondo being ready when the Boston Celtics open the season.
Brad Stevens, the team’s first-year coach, said the team is “unlikely” to have Rondo by Oct. 30.
“My understanding, and the last time that we’ve had discussions about it, was that [Rondo’s return is] very indeterminate still,” Stevens said on 98.5 the SportsHub (via ESPN). “But it sounds like it would be unlikely that he would be playing at the very start of the regular season. What that means beyond that, I think that’s going to be on his doctors, his training staff, him, making the call on when he’s ready. I’ve told him from Day 1, come back when you’re ready. I think it’s really important that he feels good when he’s back and ready to play.”
Rondo is recovering from surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament and Celtics President Danny Ainge was even more forthright, saying he’d be “shocked” if Rondo were ready for the opener.
“We’ve just seen examples of why we shouldn’t give dates of expected return,” Ainge said (via the SportsHub), presumably speaking of the Chicago Bulls’ Derrick Rose. “We’ll just take it week by week and he’ll continue to get evaluated, but he’s working extremely hard and he wants to play. He’s excited for the new team. I think there was a time when all of [Boston’s offseason moves were] happening that he was sort of wondering, ‘Where do I fit in here? What’s our team?’ But I think Rajon is in a very good place right now.”