With a little more than five minutes remaining and the Mavericks trailing the Bulls by seven points on Friday, Rajon Rondo was subbed out by Dallas head coach Rick Carlisle, and finished the rest of the game watching from the bench.
The Mavericks closed the gap, and were within a single possession in the game’s closing seconds before ultimately suffering the loss.
Rondo, of course, was a midseason addition via trade from Boston, and is a former All-Star who theoretically was brought in to run the show precisely in these crunch time situations. So, not surprisingly, Carlisle was asked why he benched his starting point guard afterward — five separate times.
Coach Rick Carlisle repeatedly referred to Rondo’s crunch-time benching as a “coach’s decision” during his postgame news conference and declined to discuss the strategic logic of not playing Rondo down the stretch.
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