Zach Lowe: Courtney Lee has been really unhappy due to his frustration with Rondo's game

Celtics nation has been looking for a silver lining after Rondo's ACL injury. Most articles trying to be optimistic included a variation of the phrase "I'm not going to say that the Celtics will play better without Rondo, but..." which was followed by some statistics about how the Celtics' offense wasn't that hurt without Rondo this season and how his defense has slipped. The argument for the offense part is basically that Rondo dominates the ball, so when he's not there the ball movement is better, and more people get involved in offense. Well, apparently there is more to this story. Brace yourselves:

Zach Lowe: "I've heard through back channels that Courtney Lee has been really unhappy in Boston, because he feels like the whole offense is Rondo pounding the ball and he doesn't get to do anything."

“Don’t get me wrong,” [Jason Terry] prefaced, “Rajon (Rondo) makes us the best we can possibly be.”

(You can just hear that BUT coming, can’t you?)

“But,” he continued, “now, having multiple ball-handlers out there, it’s just going to make us unpredictable. You don’t know who’s going to handle it. I think the wings are going to get out there and run a little harder. We should be able to play in transition a little more.”


Add to that Barbosa's reported frustration earlier in the season, and it's not hard to see what's going on here. The Boston Celtics had a plethora of guards all of whom have disappointed with their performance so far. Well, one reason for that is Rondo's play. Rondo, Pierce and Garnett's USG% has gone up by about 2% in the last two years, yet Terry and Lee are seeing post-rookie-career-low numbers in that column (data per It's also difficult not to remember Ray Allen's frustration last year when talking about USG%.

Again, this is not to say the Celtics will play better without Rondo. This is not his fault either, Doc and Ainge have chosen to designate Rondo as the leader, and that's the way he plays as he creates great stuff for the big men and the wings. However, several members of the supporting cast who like to create their own offense were clearly not happy with this path the organization has taken.

Celtics have found their silver linings in injuries before: KG's injury in 2008-9 led to the rise of Rondo. Allen went down and we've gotten Bradley. JO and Wilcox's injuries moved Garnett to 5 and he has found the fountain of youth there. Maybe we'll finally get to use a significant portion of our roster much more effectively for the rest of this season.