Rajon Rondo Injury: Updates on Mavericks Star's Face and Return

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistFebruary 1, 2015

Issac Baldizon/Getty Images

Rajon Rondo is recovering from an injury suffered on an inadvertent knee from teammate Richard Jefferson Jan. 31 vs. the Orlando Magic. He will return vs. the Thunder on Feb. 19

Continue for updates.

Rondo to Return Thursday vs. Thunder

Tuesday, Feb. 17

Tim MacMahon of ESPN reported Rondo will play vs. Oklahoma City on Feb. 19.

Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com indicated it remains to be seen whether or not he will wear a mask.

Surgery Not Ruled Out for Rondo

Friday, Feb. 6

ESPN's Marc Stein notes that surgery is still possible, but the Mavericks are hopeful that it won't be needed.

On Feb. 2, Stein, via the Mavericks, noted Rondo suffered an orbital fracture in his left eye, along with a nasal fracture.

Rondo Injured by Inadvertent Knee from Richard Jefferson

Saturday, Jan. 31

Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News reported that Rondo will not return for the Mavericks in their game against the Orlando Magic after suffering a head injury.

Rondo left early in the first quarter after taking an inadvertent knee to the head from teammate Richard Jefferson, as you can see here:

Rondo, 28, has seen his number of games played drop every year since playing in 81 games during the 2009-10 NBA season. After playing in 53 of 66 possible games during the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season, he appeared in only 38 games in 2012-13 and 30 in 2013-14. 

Even before this season started, Rondo went under the knife to repair a broken left hand after missing most of last season with a torn ACL. He told reporters in September that being able to come back from the torn ACL really puts all of his other injuries in perspective, via Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com.

"The frustration was that day [of the hand injury], but the last couple days, I've been fine," Rondo said. "I've been pretty positive. I think for what I went through with my ACL, this is nothing. I'm still looking forward to the season. I have high hopes."

It's frustrating for everyone watching Rondo play because there's a uniqueness to his style that makes him compelling to watch. He averaged at least 11 assists per game from 2010 to 2013 but "slipped" down to 9.8 per game last year. 

He's still a dynamic talent, averaging 8.9 assists and 6.4 rebounds per game this season.

Dallas acquired Rondo to be the missing piece on a championship-contending team. It was a wise gamble from owner Mark Cuban, though one with inherent risks because of the four-time All-Star's long injury history. 

There are some limitations to Rondo's offensive game, particularly when he tries to shoot, but a point guard's first job is to distribute the ball and put his teammates in a position to score easy points. Few players do that as well as the Mavericks star. 

Losing Rondo for any length of time changes the identity of the Mavericks' style and what they want to do on offense. 

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