3-on-3: Rajon Rondo

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images

Celtics guard Rajon Rondo dives for a loose ball during the playoffs last season.Our good friends over at CelticsHub are hosting a 3-on-3 series in which their staff tackles three questions on each player currently under contract on the Celtics' roster. Sure, with only six guys signed, it's not positioned to be a long series, but an entertaining activity to reacclimatize with the roster, nevertheless. And while no one invited me to the party, I'm totally crashing it. Today's focus: Rajon Rondo.

Hop HERE to read their full entry, then check out my responses below:

1. Will Rajon Rondo be traded before this season starts?

While Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge didn't exactly say he wouldn't trade Rondo, the spin control in the wake of the Chris Paul rumors seems to suggest the team believes he will be here when the season starts. As Ainge stressed, he has no intentions of trading Rondo, but he has to be open-minded to potential deals (regardless of which way the communication flows to start that process). Rondo is the team's most valuable young commodity and with a roster overhaul looming after this season, Ainge must explore all options to keep this team competitive. It's just hard to envision too many scenarios in which the team would be willing to ship Rondo out.

2. Should the C's consider dealing Rondo if they can’t get a superstar like Chris Paul?

Well, would that include a superstar big man? We all know this team desperately needs size and it doesn't come cheap in the NBA. The only way you even consider trading Rondo is if you get a point guard you believe is better in return (Paul would be one of maybe only three guys you'd consider there) or a game-changing big man to build around. Yet again, there's just not many elite big men out there that teams are willing to give up. Even with the potential for a loaded 2012 draft, you most certainly wouldn't trade a known commodity like Rondo for the uncertainty of ping pong balls.

3. What effect will these rumors have on Rondo this season if he remains in Green?

While everyone seems to focus on the potential negative fallout, shouldn't we also brace ourselves for the other end of the spectrum? You know, an angry Rondo, but in a good way. The one that opens camp with a "I'll show you an elite point guard" type chip on his shoulder and reminds us all what a completely engaged Rondo is capable of. Oh sure, there's a pattern of potential moping from incidents like the Obama jab to the Perkins trade, but this will be a good test of Rondo's maturity, particularly if the team sees him as the centerpiece after the season. One thing to consider: In a season in which many players with arrive oozing post-lockout rust, you can certainly envision Rondo just running circles around some guys and maybe even carrying his elderly Big Three in a true pass-the-torch year.