Rajon Rondo’s NBA career looked dead in the water heading into this past summer, and all he was able to muster in free agency was a one-year, $9.5 million deal with the wacky Sacramento Kings. But Rondo has revived his career in Sacramento, and multiple league executives told the Sporting News’ Sean Deveney that the mercurial point guard could get a max contract in 2016.
After the disaster in Dallas, Rondo is averaging 12.9 points, 10.7 assists and 7.1 rebounds in Sacramento. He’s shooting 44.2 percent and a respectable 35.4 percent from three, although his free throw percentage is at a wretched 42.1 percent. Still, the averages are more in line with his numbers in Boston, and the uptick in three-point shooting on 2.5 attempts per game is a good sign.
Is this all worthy of a max contract? Like Rondo himself, it’s complicated. He’ll be 30 going into next summer, and it’s still unclear how much better he actually makes Sacramento. The Kings have been better with him on the bench, although it’s worth noting that the team has been successful with Rondo and DeMarcus Cousins on the floor together. That just hasn’t happened enough.
The salary cap is set to spike to around $90 million in 2016, or possibly even higher, so plenty of teams will have the cap space to throw a big deal at Rondo. If he keeps performing like he is, perhaps it’ll happen. But with a max deal for him set to start close to $30 million, it’s hard to say he’d be worth it, even if it’s a shorter deal.