Rajon Rondo, NBA All-Star and NBA champion, recently took a trip through Asia to teach various basketball skills to more-than-happy student ballers. Rondo spoke with Ethan Sherwood Strauss of Bleacher Report about various things and Rondo had high praise for basketball junkies in the Philippines. Below are the highlights of his interview with Strauss were he gives daps to Filipino Ballers:
Bleacher Report (b/r): You talked about being interested in the basketball culture in the Philippines. I was wondering: What made you interested in that culture?
Rajon Rondo (RR): Just common sense. The fans are crazy there. It’s unbelievable how many Celtic fans are there, how many Rondo fans are there. They bleed basketball. It’s like being home in Boston, but kinda on steroids. Population of about 93 million, and they show a lot of love. A lot of fans understood the game of basketball, and I think they could relate to me because I’m not the biggest guy on the court, but I play with a lot of heart.
b/r: I hear that they play in sandals. Did you see any of that? Could you ever see yourself playing in sandals?
RR: As I grew up, I played in sandals. I played in flip-flops all the time back in the day. That’s why I didn’t really care about spraining my ankles. When I first started in the NBA, I loved low-cuts. I can play (in them), because I used to grow up playing in flip-flops all the time.
b/r: You have a lot of unique aspects to your game. One thing comes to mind: You’ll do a lot of pass fakes, even when you’re standing completely still. When you do the skill development with younger players, do you give them advice on how to do some of the unique things that you do?
RR: It depends on the talent. I did a camp in Manila. Those guys were pretty advanced, so I taught them a little bit more of my tricks and why I do them. Versus the camp in Hong Kong, those guys are pretty young. They’re like 15 or 14 years old so it would have been hard to kind of grasp why I do so many ball fakes.
b/r: You’re working with young talent on the tour. What city had the most talent?
RR: Manila. The clinic I held in Manila, those guys were advanced. I did a couple of my moves and a couple of guys picked up on it very well. I had more of an advanced-skills camp and I challenged those guys to do my moves as far as pick-and-rolls, behind-the-back pass. I didn’t do it traditional, you know, fundamental camp. A lot of my moves are, unfundamental, as you’d say.
Now, if you didn’t know, my Baller Mind Frame partner, Rich (handles all BMF designs) and I are both of Filipino descent. On top of it, Rich is a huge Celtics fan and created a design showing his love for both the team and Rondo himself, which can be seen on our Facebook page (while you’re there, give the page a Like too!). So, you know that Rich and I are tapping ourselves on the back and smiling right now since we both ball. FLIP SQUUUUAAAAADDDDD!