NBA recap: Rondo most talented former 'Cat, Meeks ends season on a hot streak


Rajon Rondo (Celtics)-13.7 PTS, 9.8 AST, 2.3 STL
Rondo is by far the most talented former Wildcat in the NBA right now. He’s had a stellar season that included his first NBA All-Star appearance and was the Celtics most consistent player. Rondo has the chance to lead Boston to another NBA title, but a lot of that hinges on the players around him. The C’s have lost three of their last five games headed into the Eastern Conference playoffs, but Rondo didn’t disappoint during the last game of the season despite a 106-95 loss to the Bucks. He tallied another double-double, scoring 21 points while dishing out 15 dimes. It’s imperative for Rondo to get started early in the playoffs if the Celtics want to have any chance of surviving in the later rounds. Boston plays the Miami Heat in the first round.

Jodie Meeks (Sixers)-4.7 PTS, 0.7 AST, 31.8 % 3P
Meeks ended the season on a hot streak due in large part to the fact that he was able to get more playing time; why didn’t this happen earlier? Meeks tallied three straight games of double-digit scoring, with 21 points which matched a career high during a hotly contested matchup against the Heat on Monday. With head coach Eddie Jordan getting canned earlier today, it will be interesting to see where Meeks will fit in with the team down the road. He’s recently shown the ability to hit it from deep and if he can play consistent basketball, the sky seems to be the limit. The most important factor in that equation is minutes, and lots of them. He’s averaged 21 minutes in the Sixers last five games and his 12.4 points per game during that span are indicative of what he can do at this level.

Chuck Hayes (Rockets)-4.4 PTS, 5.7 REB, 0.5 BLK
Hayes and the Rockets sputtered towards the end of the season, unable to gain any ground in the Western Conference playoffs picture. With that said, there may not be a better team without an All-Star than the Rockets. Hayes has been inconsistent the entire season; one game he’s up, the next he’s down, but he’s given it his all with starting center and perennial All-Star Yao Ming out due to a foot injury. Hayes grabbed 18 rebounds during a 113-96 victory over the playoff bound Jazz last Wednesday, which displays Hayes’ ability to outwork his opponents. That ‘hustle’ however, hasn’t been seen throughout the entire season. He averaged 5.6 points and 8.7 rebounds in the Rockets last five games, a good sign moving into next season.

Keith Bogans (Spurs)-4.4 PTS, 1.2 AST, 35.7% 3P
Despite the Spurs not being an upper echelon team this season, Bogans has the luxury of making it to the playoffs once again. The veteran has given the Spurs a boost this season starting, coming off the bench, and doing just about anything head coach Greg Popovich asks of the sixth year guard out of Kentucky. His most recognized role is ‘defensive stopper’ now that Bruce Bowen retired from the game this past off-season. Bogans didn’t finish the season strongly despite a 17 point effort during a 133-111 victory over the Timberwolves on Monday. It will be interesting to see how he is used in the playoffs; starting or coming off the bench, most notably because he took over Richard Jefferson’s spot in the starting lineup when the newly acquired free-agent couldn’t seem to get things rolling. Depending on who they play, Bogans will matchup against opponents’ best guard/forward player. Think Kobe Bryant.

Tayshaun Prince (Pistons)-13.5 PTS, 5.1 REB, 3.3 AST
Depending on how the ping-pong balls play out, Prince could be playing with another former Kentucky Wildcat. It’s no secret that many teams covet the services of DeMarcus Cousins and if he falls, or for that matter jumps up, the Pistons could snag the big fella who is headed to the NBA after only one season. There isn’t much else to boast about for the Pistons, but Prince did his best to rally the troops towards the end of the season. He’s played big minutes since his return from injury just months ago and has done an admirable job in doing so. He racked up 28 points, seven assists, and six rebounds during a 106-99 victory over the Heat last Friday, but that doesn’t help the Pistons in the playoff race. For the first time in a long time, the Pistons will be out of the playoffs after having been the Eastern Conference’s best team for several seasons. Weird I know.

Nazr Mohammed (Bobcats)-7.9 PTS, 5.2 REB, 0.7 BLK
Mohammed struggled mightily to get back from an injury that left him out of action for more than a month. At one point in the season, it looked like Mohammed could make a case to play in the All-Star game, backing up starting center Tyson Chandler who was dealing with his own injuries. It was all for not and Mohammed and the Bobcats are sitting on the outside looking in for the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Jamaal Magloire (Heat)-2.1 PTS, 3.4 REB
Magloire’s season has been up and down, but he was able to get in two nice games before the regular season ended last night. He had five points and six rebounds during a victory over the Nets Wednesday night and grabbed another four rebounds during a victory over the Sixers on Monday night. It doesn’t appear like Magloire will get too much action in the playoffs, but that could quickly change if production is low from the center position.

Randolph Morris (Hawks)-2.2 PTS, 1.4 REB
Morris will most likely find himself in street clothes for much of the playoffs, even with the six point six rebound outburst he displayed in a 99-83 victory over the Cavs Wednesday night. Unfortunately for Morris, this has been the norm for the former Wildcats center the entire season, well his entire career for that matter. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for a once talented college kid from Atlanta, Georgia.

Kelenna Azubuike (Warriors)-injured

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