It’s no coincidence that the Chicago Bulls have lost two in a row in the games Rajon Rondo .sat down in their first-round playoff series against the Boston Celtics. Rondo, missed the last two games with a broken right thumb, was originally thought to be out indefinitely but reports say he was out there trying to make a comeback.
While there’s no guarantee he will play, Rondo will see if he can give it a go, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told USA TODAY Sports’ Jeff Zillgitt.
The person requested anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak publicly about Rondo’s condition.
Aside from the fractured right thumb, Rondo has also been dealing with a lingering right wrist injury. He has removed the hard cast that had encased his wrist and took jumpers on Tuesday. The cast wasn’t related to his thumb injury, but he was wearing a splint.
On Tuesday, the Bulls said Rondo was out for Game 5. The series is tied 2-2 after the Celtics won both games in Chicago, wresting back homecourt advantage.
“This is honestly the first time he has touched a basketball with that right hand,” Hoiberg told reporters on Tuesday. “We’ll see. We’ll see how it goes. … It’s so early in the process. Just watching him wince a little bit as the ball was coming to him makes me think it’s a long shot, but if there’s anybody who can do it, will try to fight through it, it’s Rondo.
Rondo was integral to the Bulls’ first two victories to go up 2-0, but the Bulls’ offense has since been stymied as Jerian Grant and Michael Carter-Williams have assumed point guard responsibilities. Isaiah Canaan was slated to start Game 5 at point guard, marking the Bulls’ third starting point guard of the series.
Before his 13 points in 34 minutes in Game 4, Canaan hadn’t played more than seven minutes a game since the All-Star break.