Three games into the 2014-15 Celtics season, Rajon Rondo is still working his way back to full health. The point guard missed the entire preseason as he recovered from a broken left hand that he suffered in late September. Now, he’s still trying to shake off the offensive rust from that extended absence in regular season game action after missing most of Boston’s training camp last month.
Despite these obstacles, the 28-year-old has come out of the gate this year looking far more consistent than he did throughout his 30 regular season games last season. In fact, Rondo’s been posting some historic early season numbers, according to ESPN Stats and Info.
Rajon Rondo is the 1st player since Magic Johnson in 1983 w/ at least 35 assists & 25 rebounds in his team’s 1st 3 games of a season. #Elias
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) November 4, 2014
Overall Rondo is averaging 8.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 11.7 assists per game over that stretch, but his production has been fairly consistent across the box score board each night.
vs. Brooklyn: 13 points, 7 rebounds, 12 assists
@ Houston: 4 points, 10 rebounds, 8 assists
@ Dallas: 7 points, 9 rebounds, 15 assists
The good news doesn’t stop there, though.
After 3 games, Rondo leads NBA in assists per game (11.7), assist opportunities per game (21.3) & points created by assists per game (26.3).
— Ben Rohrbach (@brohrbach) November 4, 2014
Rondo hasn’t been perfect. His shot (37.9 percent from the field) and turnovers (4.3 per game) need some work, but you can chalk up those stats to rust more than anything else in the early going. Once you factor that in, it’s hard not to be impressed by the kind of all-around output Rondo has produced through the first week of the NBA season.
Another encouraging part of Rondo’s stellar early season play is that his athleticism appears to be back as well. There is no better evidence of this than the point guard’s breakaway dunk on Saturday night against the Rockets.
That was the first slam for No. 9 in a game since the night he tore his ACL against the Hawks in January 2013.
Celtics president Danny Ainge told Celtics fans before the season he expected the best season of Rondo’s career this year. Knowing a clean bill of health is on the way for the point guard, Rondo’s impressive start may be just the beginning of a historic campaign for the Celtics captain.