This season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Avery Bradley and Rajon Rondo will be reunited. The two guards spent four years together with the Boston Celtics, and during that time they formed a strong bond. Now, they’re hoping to use that bond for the betterment of the team they used to call their rivals.
After practice on Tuesday, Bradley said that he and Rondo have been going at it during scrimmages to set the tone for the rest of the team.
“We have to push each other. Rondo told me yesterday, he said ‘make sure you guard me every single practice so we can help each other get better.’ That has to be everybody’s mentality because we are a team, and we want to push each other and we want to get the best out of each other every single day,” Bradley said.
That may explain why we’ve heard so much about how great Bradley’s looked in training camp so far.
All jokes aside, Rondo and Bradley’s intensity is a good thing for a team that has had reserved personalities like Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram in the locker room in recent years. The question is whether or not they can help the team in other ways.
Both Bradley and Rondo have a reputation for being pesky defenders on the perimeter, but most stats haven’t supported that narrative in recent years. Through 49 games with the Clippers last season, Bradley posted a team-worst defensive rating — how many points his team allowed per 100 possessions while he was on the floor — of 116. Rondo was also among the worst defenders on his team, posting a defensive rating of 110.
The message they’re sending to the locker room is a good one, but we’ll see whether or not they can back it up with their play in a few weeks.