Boston Celtics' Rajon Rondo: Underrated and Underappreciated

TJ ZwarychSenior Writer IMarch 8, 2009

Rajon Rondo is a fantastic young point guard who I think doesn't quite get his due. He's a great player who helped his team to an NBA Championship in only his second year in the league.

When people think of the Boston Celtics, they think of the "Big Three": Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen. Why not add Rajon Rondo to that? You could always make it the "Big Four," no? You know, "the more the merrier," right?

So maybe he isn't quite in the category of that trio of teammates, but you get my point.

Rondo currently sits at fourth in the league in dimes per game, with only future Hall of Famers Chris Paul and Jason Kidd, plus an on-fire Jose Calderon, posting more than his 8.4. He is also fourth in the league in steals (1.92 per game) and one of only three players averaging more than 1.5 steals and eight assists per game.

He often gets criticized for not being "an NBA-caliber shooter," but Rondo is averaging almost 12 PPG this season on better than 51 percent shooting.

Rondo is also arguably the best defending point guard in the league. Night in and night out, he has to compete with, in just the Eastern Conference, the likes of Devin Harris, Mo Williams, Mike Bibby, and Derrick Rose. Yet he shuts them down.

Now, Rondo isn't known as a scorer, but on a team like the Celtics, he does what he needs to do. For example, in a March 6 win over the Cavaliers, Rondo only six points, but when you have Pierce with 29, Powe with 20 and Allen with 17, he contributed plenty with his 10 assists, two steals and minimal two turnovers. Also in that game, counterpart Mo Williams had only two assists and four turnovers.

And in a victory that necessitated high scoring (over the Nets on March 4), Rajon Rondo helped the Celtics to 115 points as he had 20 points, five assists, five rebounds, a steal and only two turnovers. He also forced All-Star point guard Devin Harris into six turnovers and only 33 percent shooting from the field.

I'm not saying Rajon Rondo should be MVP by any stretch of the imagination, but I really think he should get consideration for the All-Star game next year. One need only look at his team's record and his role on said team to realize he's one of the league's premier point guards.