Rajon Rondo is physically incapable of acting like a normal player. On most nights, that’s a good thing — he sees angles other players don’t see, and has the audacity to try breathtaking things on the court that ensure fans get their money’s worth. Of course, on some nights, it goes the other way and Rondo’s brain seems to stop functioning properly. Monday night was one of the latter.
Just before the end of the first half in the Sacramento Kings’ game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Rondo was set to inbound the ball in the backcourt, but refused to touch the ball and start the five-second inbound clock. From the replay above, it sure seems like he was waiting for either Ben McLemore or Darren Collison to come to the ball before he touched it, but they were unaware. Still, Rondo would have had five seconds once he touched the ball, which should have been plenty of time to get someone’s attention. Instead, he was assessed with a delay-of-game technical foul, for which Kevin Durant shot a free throw.
It’s strange, but not the heights of strangeness Rondo sometimes reaches. Of course, once the ball is reset, Rondo again refuses to just take the ball from the referee, and we’ve arrived at peak Rondo. This time, the ref doesn’t hesitate before assessing a second delay of game and a second free throw for Durant. It was a quick whistle, but just take the ball, Rajon!
The worst part of this whole ordeal is that it took place with less than two seconds left in the half. If Rondo had just inbounded the damn ball, the Kings might have gotten a bucket, or they might not. But he allowed the Thunder to get two free points for no good reason. The Rajon Rondo carnival of strange continues.