Lakers News: Frank Vogel Touts Rajon Rondo As ‘Pivotal’ To Championship Efforts
Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Former Los Angeles Lakers point guard Rajon Rondo now resides with the Atlanta Hawks, where he hopes to help take a young team to the postseason. Last season — despite struggles in the regular season — head coach Frank Vogel believed in Rondo, who delivered in a big way once the playoffs began.

Rondo was consistently the Lakers’ third or fourth-best player on their run to the 17th championship in franchise history. All season, Vogel and Lakers players said that Playoff Rondo would come in the important moments, and he absolutely did.

With Rondo returning to Staples Center and receiving his ring on Saturday, Vogel spoke to his contributions to the Lakers in 2020.

“He was pivotal in our overall identity last year and who we were as a group. A high I.Q. group. Obviously, during that playoff run he had some spectacular performances that helped us win a championship. It was a great personal relationship of mine getting to coach him for a year. A great experience for me, and obviously the Lakers will always be grateful for his contributions to help us win a championship last year.”

Statistics and the eye test were both in agreement that Rondo was one of L.A.’s most important people in September and October. His averages improved from the regular season across the board, and he helped anchor the offense when LeBron James was on the bench.

In addition to these compliments, Vogel also teased a tribute video, which was played during their game against the Hawks on Saturday:

While he was only with the team for two years, Rondo’s contributions were vital for a championship, making all of the regular season struggles forgiven and forgotten.

Vogel calls Rondo ‘unique’ player

When asked if it has been difficult to replace Rondo this season, Vogel pointed to some of the Lakers guards that have been able to do so. He added that there is no one in the league that can truly replace what a veteran like Rondo brings to the table though.

“He’s such a unique player. His mind is unlike any player that I’ve ever coached and that the league has probably seen. He just has a unique lens on the game. I think that’s something you cannot replace, but some of his playmaking ability and defense those things have been replaced with Talen [Horton-Tucker] getting more opportunity. Alex [Caruso] getting more opportunity. Dennis [Schroder] being in the fold and being a big part of our team, but Rondo is unique.

“That’s one thing that I’ve always felt about him.”

Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Alex Caruso Skipped Sister’s Wedding To Avoid Quarantine

Resuming the 2019-20 NBA season in a bubble at Walt Disney World due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19)…

DeAndre Jordan’s Flagrant Foul On Nick Young Downgraded

On Tuesday night’s 116-103 victory against the Clippers, two flagrant fouls were…

Lakers News: Phil Jackson Says Lakers Coaching Job Was Offered to Him

As Phil Jackson continues his media tour to promote his new book,…

Lakers Preseason: Lonzo Ball, Rajon Rondo Both Sitting Game Vs. Kings

Despite Lonzo Ball being cleared for full contact, he has yet to play in the 2018 NBA preseason as the Los Angeles…