Rajon Rondo joined the Chicago Bulls this offseason as a high-profile acquisition expected to serve as the team’s starting point guard. That arrangement lasted all of 29 games before the career-long enigma worked his way into yet another organization’s doghouse. A one-game suspension in early December set the stage for four straight games on the bench, and it looks likely that Rondo will either be released, traded for a pittance, or left to wither on the bench for several months. Whatever the case, he doesn’t appear to factor into any of the Bulls’ plans for the short or long-term future.
Unfortunately, the Bulls set their promotional giveaways for this season back when Rondo was supposed to occupy a big role. That means fans attending Monday night’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at the United Center received the wonderful collector’s item of a Rajon Rondo bobblehead:
It's Rajon Rondo bobblehead night at United Center. This might be his only moment out of warmup togs, though, vs. OKC. pic.twitter.com/IO1COFNvQW
— Steve Aschburner (@AschNBA) January 9, 2017
As expected, Aschburner’s tweet was right on. Rondo did not play at all vs. OKC, earning his fifth-straight “Did Not Play – Coach’s Decision” in a 109-94 loss. Worse yet, Rondo was the only one of Chicago’s 13 active players not to see the court despite extended garbage time in the fourth quarter and early exits for a dinged-up Dwyane Wade and sick Jimmy Butler.
Don’t worry, though — head coach Fred Hoiberg says Rajon could see some run on the second night of a back-to-back Tuesday at the Washington Wizards:
Hoiberg said Rondo could "potentially" play tomorrow. I'd bet against it.
— Sean Highkin (@highkin) January 10, 2017
While Rondo’s fate in Chicago seems sealed, it arguably would have been more embarrassing if Hoiberg had given him pity minutes on Monday. At least everyone gets a goofy story out of Rondo’s bobblehead night instead of a depressing bit about how he jogged through five minutes at the end of a blowout loss.
Plus, this collector’s item could soon bring fans a cash windfall. Several of the Rondo bobbleheads are already on eBay, but it could be in sellers’ best interests to wait a few months. This still-unopened bobblehead commemorating Rondo’s disastrous half-season with the Dallas Mavericks is currently available for $75, more than twice as much as the highest-priced item from the Bulls’ giveaway. It’s simple economics.
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