Western Notes: Rondo, Lakers, Nuggets

The Mavs should have never acquired Rajon Rondo in a deal with the Celtics, according to Dallas coach Rick Carlisle, Tim MacMahon of ESPN.com reports. Rondo had a mostly tumultuous four months with the Mavs last season and he often clashed with Carlisle, MacMahon writes. Rondo, as MacMahon points out, averaged 9.3 points, 6.5 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game in 46 games with the Mavs, who were 26-20 when he played and 24-12 without him last season.

“Listen, we all did everything we could to make it work. It was challenging,” Carlisle told MacMahon. “Going back in time, it’s a deal we should have shied away from, for the sake of us and for the sake of him. It’s a deal we shouldn’t have made. I think we all realize that now, but when you do a deal like that, you’ve got to do everything possible to make it work. I learned a lot going through the year with him and trying to be creative and use some of his unique abilities. He’s a very talented player, and he’s having a great year this year, which is basically no surprise.”

Rondo, now with the Kings, is averaging 12.4 points and 11 assists per game.

Here’s more out of the Western Conference:

  • Kings coach George Karl is unsure if DeMarcus Cousins will return Monday, but believes it was best Cousins didn’t play over the weekend because the center has been injured, with a lower back strain, and frustrated, Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee relays.
  • Despite the fact Kobe Bryant is experiencing his worst season, Christopher Dempsey of the Denver Post opines that the superstar’s minutes should not be reduced. The topic has been debated by several scribes, especially with the Lakers struggling to win games.
  • Darrell Arthur, who re-signed with the Nuggets during the summer, has added an improved 3-point shot to his arsenal lately, Dempsey writes in a separate story.

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