A quick glance at Rajon Rondo’s numbers in his four games since returning to the lineup doesn’t reveal anything spectacular.
So far, the Los Angeles Lakers veteran point guard is averaging seven points, 3.3 rebounds and six assists playing with the team’s second unit. Rondo collected his first double-digit assist game on Tuesday night in a 112-107 victory over the Thunder, doling out 10 helpers to his teammates.
But Lakers head coach Frank Vogel isn’t looking at the box score when it comes to Rondo’s contributions. He understands that the four-time All-Star brings something unique to the table.
“Rondo had 10 assists, but Rajon’s statistics are not measured on the stat sheet, it’s measured in swag,” Vogel told reporters after the game. “He just gives us some confidence and an air about us that we know we’re going into a battle with a heck of a basketball player and he just helps our swag.”
Take that analytics!
Rajon Rondo, LeBron James Pull Off Highlight-Reel Play
One of Rondo’s prettiest assists of the night was a lob to LeBron James to close out the first half. LeBron walked reporters through the play following the game.
“The only thing I knew for sure was that the clock was running down,” James said. “And Schroder, he shot a jumper and it was short and it was a foot race between, I forgot, either [Terrance] Ferguson or somebody. And I just tried to beat him to the ball. Once I was able to beat him to the ball, I kicked it out to ‘Do’ [Rondo]. Listen, me and Do, when it comes to IQ and being cerebral out on the floor, we don’t need to say anything to each other. Do just threw it up there and I used my abilities at 34, almost 35, to go get it.”
With the win, the Lakers improved to 12-2.
LeBron James Makes History Against Thunder
Rondo was not the only Laker to hit double-digit assists. LeBron James also did it as part of a triple-double. He also notched 25 points and 11 rebounds.
With the feat, James made history as the first player with a triple-double against all 30 teams.
“I had no idea,” James said after the win. “Coach [Frank] Vogel came in here and said congratulations. I was like, I thought he was joking about my seven turnovers because I’ve been taking care of the ball so much. He said first player in NBA history to have a triple-double versus 30 teams, every team, so I was like, ‘OK. That’s pretty cool.'”
LeBron is averaging 25 points, 7.9 rebounds and a league-leading 11.1 assists per game.
“It’s unbelievable,” Vogel said. “He’ll say it’s because he’s been in the league for so long, but we all know that it’s because he’s remarkable. For him to be doing it for as long as he’s been doing it, that’s how you knock out all 30 teams with a stat like that. I don’t know if that will ever get accomplished again.”