Lakers Trade Rumors: Rajon Rondo Focus of 'Serious Talks' with Cavaliers

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 30, 2021

Los Angeles Lakers' Rajon Rondo dribbles the ball during first half of an NBA basketball game against the San Antonio Spurs Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

The Cleveland Cavaliers are holding "serious talks" with the Los Angeles Lakers to acquire veteran point guard Rajon Rondo, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski confirmed the report: 

Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

The Cleveland Cavaliers are nearing a trade to acquire Los Angeles Lakers guard Rajon Rondo -- and an agreement is expected to be reached as soon as Friday, sources tell ESPN. Rondo would be able to join Cleveland as soon as he clears Covid protocols.

That comes in the wake of Ricky Rubio tearing his ACL this week, ending his season, while Collin Sexton was already out for the year with a torn meniscus. Those two injuries have left the resurgent Cavs (20-14) incredibly thin at point guard.

Rondo, 35, hasn't made much of an impact for the Lakers this season, averaging just 3.1 points and 3.7 assists in 16.1 minutes per game across 18 contests. While a hamstring injury and his current stint in the league's health and safety protocols have cost him games, he's fallen down the pecking order in the rotation.

And with veteran Darren Collison recently added to the roster, Rondo is expendable for the Lakers. 

His potential trade would end his second stint with the team after he spent the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons with the Lakers, which included winning a title. 

Keith Smith @KeithSmithNBA

More thoughts on CLE acquiring Rondo (assuming it happens!):<br><br>-CLE will need to waive a player. Probably Ed Davis, given his non-gtd status<br><br>-LA will create a small $1.7M TPE, but it will probably go unused, given they'd just trade using Minimum Salary Exception + no roster spots

But since spending parts of the first nine seasons of his career with the Boston Celtics, Rondo hasn't lasted anywhere long. Since leaving Boston in the 2014-15 season, Rondo has played for seven different teams and hasn't lasted more than two years at any one destination. 

If nothing else, Rondo will bring experience to a young Cavaliers team trying to reach the postseason for the first time since the 2017-18 campaign, when LeBron James still played for the team. 

Led by Darius Garland (19.5 PPG, 7.3 APG), Jarrett Allen (16.8 PPG, 10.8 RPG) and ascendant rookie Evan Mobley (14.1 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 1.8 BPG), the Cavs are one of the NBA's best stories this season. Rondo should help patch up some of the team's depth issues in the backcourt.