Sometimes, Rajon Rondo can use his astounding athleticism to shred a defense and post Magic-type stats. Tuesday night was not one of those times.
To cap a pedestrian -- by his standards -- performance against the Houston Rockets, the Celtics' point guard nearly cost his team a win. Following a missed shot from Luis Scuola in the final minute of regulation, Paul Pierce scooped up a loose ball and through a long outlet pass to Rondo, who was streaking behind the Rockets' defenders. With the Celtics already leading by two points and less than 20 seconds remaining, Rondo appeared to have an easy layup and a chance to help put the game away. But he somehow mishandled the ball, managing little more than a feeble effort that harmlessly bounced off the backboard for a miss.
To make matters worse, the Rockets got the rebound with 14 seconds left, allowing Goran Dragic to knock down a baseline jumper to send the game into overtime.
With nine points in the first quarter, it looked as if Rondo was on his way to another superlative game. However, he simply could not score after the first quarter. Luckily for Rondo, Pierce dominated in overtime and the Celtics went on to win their fifth straight game since the All-Star break.
But hey, it could have been even worse. He could have air balled it..