NBA: Ranking the top 20 players that impact the game in non-scoring roles

NBA Oklahoma City Thunder Chris Paul (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
NBA Oklahoma City Thunder Chris Paul (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
4 of 17
NBA Los Angeles Lakers
NBA Los Angeles Lakers Rajon Rondo (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

17. (Playoff) Rajon Rondo, Los Angeles Lakers

The Chicago Bulls of the 1990s were a team that had the switch. There was a regular-season Bulls and a postseason Bulls. The postseason Bulls went 6-0 in the NBA Finals, while some of their regular season teams didn’t finish with the best record in the NBA.

Although commentators like Charles Barkley question point guard Rajon Rondo’s fit for the Lakers, anyone who’s seen Playoff Rondo won’t. Playoff Rondo is averaging 11.3 points, 7.8 rebounds and 12.1 assists per game in the last two first rounds he’s been in. Most importantly, the teams he’s been on are 6-0 in the first round the last two postseasons he’s played. Playoff Rondo was naturalized in the 2018 Western Conference finals by the mighty Warriors.

The mighty Warriors will not get the invite to the 2020 postseason, meaning they won’t be able to neutralize Playoff Rondo. His ability to control the pace for an entire game makes him extremely valuable. He is only 6-foot-1, but with his 6-foot-9 wingspan, he can grab rebounds with the big men and throw the ball ahead or push it down the court fast with the dribble. At age 34, Playoff Rondo has the ability to play like he is in his 20s.