Rajon Rondo never left the bench Wednesday night, watching all 53 minutes of the Lakers’ 107-104 victory over Dallas in the same pullover and sweats he warmed up in. Of course, that didn’t stop the master troll from twisting the knife in his former team, raising a metaphorical middle finger to Mavs fans after rookie Austin Reaves put the Lakers in front with a late three.
Now in his second stint with the Lakers, the 35-year-old has played sparingly this season, averaging career-lows in minutes (14.9), points (3.4) and assists (3.6) per game. Rondo’s Dallas tenure in 2014-15 lasted all of 46 games, a nightmare stint that ended with coach Rick Carlisle benching him for the remainder of their playoff series with Houston (he was so detested within the Mavs’ locker room that his teammates declined to offer him a playoff share). Only one current Mav—Dwight Powell—remains from that team, though Rondo, it would seem, still harbors plenty of animosity toward the Dallas fanbase.
The Lakers, after a rough start to the year, are beginning to hit their stride, winning four of their past five games with the trio of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook (67 combined points Wednesday night) playing a major role in L.A.’s resurgence. The Mavericks, meanwhile, have fallen into a tailspin, dropping 10 of their last 15 after beginning the season on a 9-4 tear. Dallas did well to force overtime Wednesday night, fighting the Lakers tooth and nail despite Luka Doncic sitting out his third straight game with an ankle injury.
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