Championship-Winning NBA Star Retiring After 16 Years


Rajon Rondo racked up accolades and championship titles throughout his time in the NBA. But after 16 years on the court, the two-time NBA champ is hanging up his jersey for good. 

Rondo last played for the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2022 season, leading some to question if he has officially stepped away from the sport. In an April 1 appearance on the All the Smoke podcast, Rondo confirmed that his time in the NBA is in fact over. 

“Absolutely,” Rondo responded when asked if he was retired. “Yeah, I’m done. I can’t. I’d rather spend time with my kids.”

Rondo, a four-time NBA All-Star point guard, began his professional career with the Boston Celtics in 2006. The following season, Rondo earned his first championship ring when the Celtics triumphed in the 2008 NBA Finals. He played with the Celtics for nearly a decade before joining the Dallas Mavericks in 2014. 

From there, he continued to hop around every year, putting in yearlong stints with the Sacramento Kings, Chicago Bulls, and New Orleans Pelicans. He joined the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2018 season and won his second NBA championship title with the team in 2020, sharing the celebration with stars like LeBron James. He transferred to the Atlanta Hawks before returning to L.A. to play for the Clippers in 2021, then rejoined the Lakers for the ’21–’22 season. Finally, he played what ended up being his last season with the Cleveland Cavaliers, stepping off the court for the last time in 2022. 

Rondo reflected on his long and illustrious career on All the Smoke.  

“What a time,” he mused. “It was definitely something that I never took for granted when I was in the game.” 

“I loved every minute of it, and I appreciate the brotherhood that I was able to share and bond and grow with over the years. I’ve learned so much in this game and it’s made me the man who I am today,” he continued. “I tell people all the time, this wasn’t a dream of mine, it was a goal. I was able to lock in, stay disciplined, I didn’t party a lot in college. But it was worth the sacrifice of me getting to where I wanted to be in life.”

For now, Rondo is focusing on the transition from basketball star to family man. 

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