Rajon Rondo's Return Date Still to Be Decided

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Rajon Rondo's Return Date Still to Be Decided
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Injured Boston Celtics point guard Rondo missed Tuesday's practice, but, as Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald explained, it was not related to a setback in his recovery from a knee injury that has kept him out since January.

Rajon Rondo, a fixture for every team moment this season, from practices to games, missed yesterday’s practice to honor a doctor’s appointment as he continues to recover from ACL surgery.

According to a source, the Celtics point guard will also meet with his knee surgeon, Dr. James Andrews, somewhere between Dec. 7-10 in Pensacola, Fla. Rondo still needs clearance to take part in full practices.

Dr. Andrews performed surgery to repair a partial tear in Rondo's ACL last February, according to Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com, and at the time, the Celtics and Rondo hoped that he would be ready for the start of training camp.

The Celtics weren't expected to compete this season after trading away Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry in the offseason, and they have wisely played it safe with Rondo's rehab.

Assuming Rondo gets good news from Dr. Andrews, how much longer must Celtics fans wait before they see him on the court in regular-season action?

Celtics coach Brad Stevens has not set a hard date, according to Murphy:

"He’s been playing a little bit of one-on-one before games, but I haven’t seen a lot that would say he’s close to ready. I haven’t seen a timeline, or heard about anything in the near future."

But GM Danny Ainge has said that Rondo's return could come a few weeks after being cleared for full-contact practice, according to Jay King of MassLive.com:

"That’s the next stage, it's 5-on-5, a whole practice, and then it’ll probably be a week, two weeks after he starts that."

Rondo has been the subject of rampant trade speculation in the press, despite the fact that Celtics general manager Danny Ainge has denied the trade rumors.

If the Celtics are planning to build around Rondo, then they need him on the court. If the Celtics are planning to trade Rondo, then they need him on the court. Either way, Rondo's health is key to Boston's future. 

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