The Dallas Mavericks have acquired Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo in exchange for Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson, a 2015 first-round draft pick and a future second-round pick, according to Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski and ESPN's Marc Stein.
Sources: Protections on the 2015 first-round pick Dallas sent Boston: Protected 1-3 and 15-30 in 2015; 2016-2020 protected to No. 7.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 19, 2014
Dallas fended off the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers, Sacramento Kings, New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers, all of whom were mentioned in rumors involving the Celtics point guard this year. The Rockets were reportedly the other suitor, but dropped out early in the afternoon on Thursday.
Rondo has seemingly been in trade rumors every year, but several factors convinced the Celtics to finally pull the trigger. The most important one: Rondo is a free agent after the year and the team risked losing him for nothing if he didn't get traded. Rondo's game has also declined since he tore his ACL two years ago -- he's shooting just 40 percent from the field and has his lowest PER since his second season. It also helped that Boston now has a replacement in Marcus Smart, who is off to a promising start after being drafted No. 6 overall last year.
Ultimately, the Mavericks won out by giving Rondo one of the best shots of winning an NBA title. In Dallas, his passing abilities will complement Dirk Nowitzki in the pick-and-roll while taking some pressure off Monta Ellis and Chandler Parsons in the playmaking department. While neither Ellis nor Parsons were overworked within coach Rick Carlisle's system, the trade will allow for Parsons to find more spot-up shooting opportunities and Ellis to conserve energy for when he's needed to create at the ends of shot clocks late in games.
It should help that both Nowitzki and Parsons will have more catch-and-shoot opportunities playing with Rondo. They rank No. 2 and No. 14, respectively, in total catch-and-shoot points in the league, per NBA's SportVU data.
The trade should benefit Boston as well. Wright should add a shotblocking presence that neither Jared Sullinger nor Kelly Olynyk bring, though the Celtics will need to decide if he should be re-signed this summer. Crowder provides more wing athleticism, while the first-round pick acquired is the sixth Boston owns in the next two years.
The Celtics will also send Stanford rookie Dwight Powell to Dallas to complete the deal.