Pacific Notes: Rondo, Butler, Kobe, Dawson, Wilcox

The negative experience he had with the Mavericks left Rajon Rondo “hungrier” than before, though he never doubted himself, as he told Tim MacMahon of Rondo contends the back injury the Mavs said he suffered in the playoffs this past spring, reportedly a ruse that Rondo and the Mavs concocted to allow Rondo to save face, was legitimate, though he admitted to MacMahon that he probably could have played through it. The point guard who signed with the Kings on a one-year deal has “nothing but love” for the Dallas organization, he said to MacMahon, and doesn’t hold a grudge even toward Rick Carlisle, with whom he clashed.

“Every relationship doesn’t work,” Rondo said to MacMahon. “It just didn’t work. No excuses. No pointing the finger at anybody. It made me stronger, made me appreciate just playing the game, especially playing at a high level. I never doubted myself. It just didn’t work. Try to keep staying positive, but things just didn’t work out for the best for either side. And that’s just part of it. Every player, every coach doesn’t always see eye to eye. Every team doesn’t fit every person’s style of play.”

See more out of the Pacific Division here:

  • Caron Butler grew up in Wisconsin as an admirer of George Karl‘s turn-of-the-century Bucks teams and sees a lot of the rumors surrounding Karl and DeMarcus Cousins as hype, as the Kings small forward told Gery Woelfel of The Journal Times. “Everybody is not going to be comfortable with everything, whether it’s with their roles or whatever,” Butler said. “But if you come together and find the median in it, you can find ways to win. And that’s what’s we’re trying to do and that’s what all NBA teams try to do. Opinions are going to be voiced at times and sometimes they’re well-documented because they come from certain people. I don’t think that’s fair all the time. We had a great team meeting and got things together and have been moving forward ever since.’’
  • Kobe Bryant‘s accomplishments on the basketball court speak for themselves, but it’s his relentless will that sets him apart, observes Eric Koreen of The National Post.
  • The Clippers recalled C.J. Wilcox and Branden Dawson from the D-League late Monday, the Suns affiliate announced. Wilcox and Dawson went to Phoenix’s D-League team because the Clippers don’t have an affiliate of their own, and the pair hooked up with the Suns through the league’s flexible assignment system.
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