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Ex-Kings guard Rondo officially retires after 16 NBA seasons

Ex-Kings guard Rondo officially retires after 16 NBA seasons originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Former Kings point guard Rajon Rondo is calling it a career.

The 16-year NBA veteran officially announced his retirement Tuesday during an appearance on the "All the Smoke" podcast.

"Absolutely," the 38-year-old Rondo said when asked by host Matt Barnes if his NBA career was over. "Yeah, I'm done. I can't. I'd rather spend time with my kids."

Rondo was a four-time All-Star (2010-13) and two-time NBA champion (2008, 2020), last playing in the NBA in 2022 with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

"What a time, it was definitely something that I never took for granted when I was in the game," Rondo said. "I loved every minute of it, and I appreciate the brotherhood that I was able to share and bond and grow with over the years. I've learned so much in this game and it's made me the man who I am today. ... I tell people all the time, this wasn't a dream of mine, it was a goal. I was able to lock in, stay disciplined, I didn't party a lot in college. But it was worth the sacrifice of me getting to where I wanted to be in life."

In 957 career regular-season games, Rondo averaged 9.8 points, 7.9 assists and 4.5 rebounds per contest. He was named to an All-Defensive Team four times and led the NBA in assists three times.

The 6-foot-1 Rondo was drafted No. 21 overall by the Phoenix Suns and traded to the Boston Celtics on the same night in 2006. He spent his first nine seasons in Boston, serving as the team's starting point guard during the 2008 title run. Rondo became an All-Star in 2010 when he helped lead the Celtics back to the Finals. Over 92 playoff games with the Celtics, Rondo had 10 triple-doubles and averaged 14.5 points, 9.2 assists and 6.0 rebounds per game.

When the Celtics broke up their core by trading Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in 2013, Rondo became the leader of the team. He played just 30 games in 2013-14, though, due to a torn ACL suffered the year prior. He played 22 games the following season before being traded to the Dallas Mavericks in December of 2014.

Rondo's run in Dallas was short-lived, as he suited up in 46 games before leaving as a free agent in 2015. Over the next three seasons, Rondo had one-year stops with the Kings, Chicago Bulls and New Orleans Pelicans.

In 2018, Rondo teamed up with former rival LeBron James on the Los Angeles Lakers, spending two seasons in LA, winning the NBA Finals in the bubble in 2020 while playing nearly 25 minutes per game off the bench. In doing so, Rondo was just the second player to win a title for both the Celtics and Lakers -- joining Hall of Famer Clyde Lovellette (1954 with Lakers, 1963 and '64 with Celtics).

Rondo's last two seasons were split between four teams. For the 2020-21 season, he signed with the Atlanta Hawks and then was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers. In what turned out to be his final season, he rejoined the Lakers before being traded to the Cavaliers.