BOSTON – The Boston Celtics handily defeated the Los Angeles Lakers Friday night at the TD Garden, but the buzz after the game still remained fixed on the Thursday morning meetup between Kobe Bryant and Rajon Rondo.
Bryant spoke about the shared meal at the Lakers’ shootaround Friday, telling reporters it wasn’t a recruiting visit.
“We just talked about the game, we talked about the league,” Bryant explained. “We talked about good old memories of playing in the series against each other, stuff like that — different strategies and things they tried to do against us and things we tried to do against them.”
When asked about the breakfast and his new found friendship with Bryant after the game, Rondo kept it simple and funny.
“I think in his interview [last year] he called me an [expletive]. I thought the same thing of him. Just two [expletives] having breakfast,” Rondo quipped.
The clever remark was a nod to an old Bryant comment about Rondo earlier this year.
“From what I understand, he’s an [expletive] like me,” Bryant said last January when asked about how Rondo will handle the Celtics’ rebuild. “So he’ll manage.”
With both of their current teams among the worst in the NBA, Rondo also confirmed the pair bonded over their current situations at the breakfast.
“I think Kobe answered it pretty much,” Rondo said about what the pair discussed. “We just talked about 2008, 2009 and 2010 seasons. As far as him being a leader, leading a lot of young guys this year, the same thing I’m doing. The struggles he’s going through, the ones I’m going through and how to handle it…He did a lot of talking.”
Despite the problems both teams are facing, Rondo broke out of his slump Friday night to best Bryant and the Lakers. And even though the Celts still sport a sub par record, No. 9 confirmed after the game the win still meant a lot to him.
“Yes, [it’s special]. They stole the last championship from me in 2010, so every time I play them, I want to kick their butt.”