The Los Angeles Lakers brought in a number of veteran free agents this summer to join LeBron James on the new-look roster, including veteran point guard Rajon Rondo.
With starting guard Lonzo Ball dealing with injury issues last season and undergoing knee surgery during the summer, the Lakers prioritized bringing in a capable floor general who could step into the starting lineup in a pinch.
The decision to sign Rondo certainly raised eyebrows around the league. In the past, the playbook for building a team around James called for plenty of shooters, which doesn’t describe Rondo.
While he can dish with the best of them, Rondo is largely ignored by defenses on the perimeter, though his three-point shooting has actually crept up to respectable levels over the past few seasons.
For the Lakers, Rondo will need to prove that he can be effective enough shooting the ball to keep defenses honest. It also certainly wouldn’t hurt if the move to Los Angeles re-ignites his defensive skills, which used to be among some of the very best in the NBA.
Of course, while Rondo may not be the sniper and floor spacer that James-led teams tend to have, he is still one of the best playmakers in the league. The Lakers prioritized finding players who could create opportunities for others and make decisions on the fly, something James hasn’t had in the last few years.
The hope is that surrounding him with players like Rondo will take some of the offensive burden off of James. Rondo is also expected to act as a mentor to the young Lakers, with Ball, in particular, being the one who stands to benefit the most from playing alongside a crafty veteran.
Can Rondo become a mentor for these young Lakers or will his sometimes difficult personality create friction? Check out our full preview in the video above.