This is an undeniable fact. Rondo plays lazy defense. Especially in the regular season. I have an 8th grade son who plays point and have sat there and rewound tape time and time again showing him Rondo defending as an example of what NOT to do. No one can argue that he uses his unreal speed to keep his feet in front of his man. No one can argue he gives 100% to get through the pick. No one can argue he doesn't drift away from his man usually losing sight of them. He has the physical tools to do all of these against almost every player in the game. He chooses to gamble in passing lanes, try and poke the ball out from behind, and hope his team helps recover from his poor effort.
That being said, he definitely increases his level of play during the playoffs. This is likely what frustrates fans the most. He gets paid 134k each game in the regular season to do a job. Why he chooses some nights to give 100% and some nights not to is beyond me. If he did, he'd be hands down the best PG in the game. Instead he is just in the running. I definitely have left the idea of trading him because you'd never get equal value for him, however I sure wish the guy had as much pride in his effort as an NBA player ought to. I don't expect 82 straight games of 100%, however lazy defense should be the exception, not the usual.
You don't know the difference between an "undeniable fact" and an opinion. Don't worry, it's a common problem. You're not alone.
Sorry buddy. I DO know the difference, and it IS an undeniable fact. It is provable. All you have to do is watch the games, rewind the tape if you need to pay a little closer attention, and unless you are just a Rondo excuser you will see that these are true facts.
Fact - Rondo is one of the FASTEST players in the NBA. This means that very few guards have the foot speed to beat him off the dribble if he is playing fundamental defense. See Bradley and the way he keeps his feet in front of his defender...
Fact - Rondo consistently lets his man past him and tries to POKE the ball out from behind. This isn't debatable. It is clear for you to see if you want to. This is NOT fundamental defense. It is gambling lazy defense. That is a fact.
Fact - Rondo cheats the passing lanes and often turns his back to his man when the ball is not in their hands. Clearly he is trying to jump the lanes and steal the ball. I get that, however as often as he steals the ball, his man gets a wide open shot. Not great defense and if you watch the tape it is undeniable.
Fact - When they are on national TV or it is playoff time he plays a different level of defense. All you have to do is watch the tape. He steps up his effort and plays at an elite level. This is also an undeniable fact.
I am not sure what you could possibly argue above to be an opinion. If it is provable, which it is, it is a fact. Doesn't make Rondo a bad player. Just means he could be better than he is. If he is satisfied with that then I don't get it. If you refuse to admit that then I don't get that either.
I agree with many of your observations. I just have drawn different conclusions.
I think there are only a handful of guards (if there are any) who are as good man defenders as Avery Bradley. So your point is kind of moot there. And, even Bradley's man gets in the lane on occasion off the pick play.
Yes, Rondo tries to poke the ball away when the man gets by him. I would argue that it is more that he is still trying to make a play after the guy gets past him than that he is purposefully letting the guy get past him.
Yes, he cheats off certain guys looking to make plays off the ball. I think that is partially by design, but I will admit that I've heard Doc say that he sometimes does it more than he'd like. Of course, in hindsight, it's always a good play when it leads to a steal, a turnover, or a bad shot, but it's a mistake when it leads to an open jumper.
Yes, I agree that he has a tendency to step up his play in the biggest games.
While I have made many of the same observations as you have in watching Rondo's defense, those observations don't add up to your opinion
that Rondo "plays lazy defense." I, along with most NBA experts, believe that he's one of the best defensive point guards in the game. He makes plays on the defensive end of the floor, he's a disruptor. To me, that's what you want defensively out of your point guard. He's one of the best at that.
With all the pick and roll play that happens in this league, coupled with the elite ability of lead guards to make plays off the dribble, you won't find a single guard who single-handedly keeps the opposing team's best ball handling guards out of the lane for an entire game. It that's what you are looking for and anything else equals failure, you are setting yourself up to only see failure.