Since their days at Oak Hill academy, Rajon Rondo and Josh Smith have dreamed of playing together in the NBA. They aren’t alone- the Rondo-to-Smith pairing would make whatever team they reunite on Lob City East. It is a fantasy pairing that has made for many a championship run in NBA2K for years.
Josh Smith has seemingly always been a fan of the idea of playing for the Celtics and why shouldn’t he? Before this season, he would have had the chance to play alongside future Hall of Famers like Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. A Rondo-Bradley-Pierce-Smith-Garnett starting five would have come gift wrapped in an 18th banner. Now that Garnett and Pierce are gone, Boston is still an attractive option for the currently-out-of-position power forward because his best friend, Rajon Rondo, just happens to be one of the best pure point guards in the NBA.
To date, reuniting Josh Smith and Rajon Rondo has been a pipe dream but one that will stay alive for as long as they are both in the NBA.
“The conversation comes up,” Smith said. “We always tell each other how surreal a moment that would be, for us to be able to reconnect again in that realm. With the different free agencies that we both have, it could be far-fetched, but it could be possible, too.
“I’m always optimistic. I’m always thinking different scenarios. It could happen, but who knows?”
Reportedly, the Pistons are looking to trade their 2013-14 free agent, and they should. Their team is packed with talent and should have a much better record than 24-29. I guess Detroit’s frontcourt is the definition of “a good problem to have” in the sense that Andre Drummond, Greg Monroe, and Josh Smith are freak athletes that are good at basketball. It’s terrible in the sense that this combination is not winning more games and someone needs to go in order for the team to work beyond fantasy sports or video games.
Detroit would LOVE to somehow acquire Rajon Rondo. There has been speculation that perhaps a deal surrounding Greg Monroe could reunite him with Smith in the Motor City… by why would Boston do that deal? In the simplest of terms, Boston would be giving up a proven commodity in Rondo for a potential defensive frontcourt anchor in Monroe- something they are already trying to prove with Sullinger, Bass, and Olynyk. Greg Monroe is also probably going to get PAID this offseason, so to give up the Captain for the right to pay Greg Monroe sounds like the least Danny Ainge thing on the table.
Conversely, discussions of sending a package built around Jeff Green and Gerald Wallace to Detroit for Smith has also circulated NBA columns this season. Green’s contract might be more attractive than Smith’s for Detroit, but it comes with another two years of Crash Wallace at $11M per season. Conversely, do the Celtics really need $41M of an aging Josh Smith- a guy with freakish athleticism that has never reached his full potential.
In order for either of these moves to work, one of the teams involved would have to be doing the other team a favor- and I don’t think either franchise are in the favor-doing business. While this is the NBA and anything could happen, I think both teams have different plans in store for the next few seasons namely trying to draw marquee free agents to play with the superstars of their respective cities- Drummond in Detroit and Rondo in Boston.
For anyone hoping for an Oak Hill reunion, hold tight to that hope. It could happen- but most likely during the All-Star game once both Josh Smith and Rajon Rondo are both back at full steam.
Follow Padraic O'Connor on Twitter @padraic_oconnor
Source: Dan Feldman, ProBasketballTalk
Photo: Dan Lippitt/Getty Images
Padraic O'Connor 3/10/2014 11:20:00 AM Tweet Edit