A Sunday report indicated that Rajon Rondo would likely seek a trade from the Bulls if he remains on the bench going forward, and it doesn’t appear the team intends to insert him back into the starting lineup. As Vincent Goodwill of CSNChicago.com details, head coach Fred Hoiberg hedged a little during his conversation with reporters today, but it sounds like Michael Carter-Williams and Jerian Grant will handle point guard duties for now, with Rondo on the bench.
Hoiberg gave Rondo credit for handling his demotion with professionalism, and the head coach suggested he’s open to changing his plans depending on how things play out. Still, unless Rondo gets a regular spot in the rotation back within the next few days, it seems as if the Bulls and the veteran point guard may be heading for a separation. Rondo is already a trade candidate, and if Chicago can’t find a taker, there’s a chance he’ll become a release candidate later in the season as well — his salary for 2017/18 is only partially guaranteed for $3MM, and that cap hit could be spread out over multiple seasons.
Here’s more from around the Central division:
- The Bulls haven’t yet engaged in buyout talks or trade talks for Rondo, but the former All-Star is unlikely to stay upbeat if he rides the pine for long, says Goodwill in another CSNChicago.com piece. As Goodwill writes, the Rondo situation is just one of many potential problems in Chicago, as the team finds itself at a crossroads.
- In the wake of last week’s report that Hoiberg’s seat is getting hotter, Tom Ziller of SBNation.com argues that firing the head coach would be a short-sighted and ill-advised move for the Bulls.
- Jordan McRae, one of two Cavaliers players on a non-guaranteed contract, had played sparingly for the team this season and hadn’t scored double-digit points in a game until Saturday, when he got a rare start and went off for 20 points. Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com has the details on McRae’s performance, which the Cavs will have to take into account as they decide whether to keep the 25-year-old on the roster.
- Al Jefferson, who signed a three-year deal with the Pacers in July, viewed Indiana as an ideal fit and has been proven right so far, according to Jordan J. Wilson of The Indianapolis Star.