OKLAHOMA CIY I guess it is a happy birthday after all for Rajon Rondo.
Rondo, who turns 26 years old today, will play in the 61st annual all-star game this weekend.
A league source confirmed toCSNNE.comthat Rondo will be named as an all-star replacement for Atlanta Hawks guardforward Joe Johnson.
This will be Rondo's third straight all-star appearance. He joins Paul Pierce, who will be making his 10th all-star appearance for the C's.
The omission of Rondo from the Eastern Conference reserves announced on Feb. 9 caught some - including Rondo - off guard.
"It is what it is," Rondo said.
The Celtics and their 14-10 record at the time of the announcement certainly was a factor in the selection process by the coaches.
However, multiple league sources confirmed his omission had more to do with him missing eight games with a sore right wrist injury. Coaches had to submit their all-star reserves by Feb. 7 which meant the last impression many of them had of Rondo, was the first couple of games he played upon returning from the injury.
In his first game back, a 91-89 win over New York on Feb. 3, he had seven points and seven assists but turned the ball over five times. He followed that up with a five-point, 14-assist game in a win over Memphis, but he struggled shooting the ball (he was 2-for-6) and once again, he had five turnovers.
As he got healthier, his play began to pick up.
But by the time he dropped 32 points and 15 assists in a win over Chicago, or 35 points and six assists against Detroit, the all-star team had been set - and it didn't include him.
"Whether he plays in it or not, Rajon Rondo is an all-star," Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau toldCSNNE.comprior to Rondo being chosen as an all-star replacement. "He's one of the best in the game. That's why in Boston, they're a Big Four now, not a Big Three."