A league source last night confirmed a CBS-Sports.com report that the Celtics held preliminary discussions with the Lakers about trading Rajon Rondo for Dwight Howard.

“The Lakers like Rondo, and (the Celtics) have looked into getting Howard in the past,” said the source, who termed the likelihood of such a deal now “unlikely.”

Talks were last held at least two weeks ago, before Rondo was diagnosed with a torn ACL in his right knee. The Celtics guard underwent surgery by Dr. James Andrews last Tuesday in Florida, where Rondo is currently recuperating.

The surgery seemingly ended any real chance of trade discussions moving beyond the preliminary phase. Such a deal would not have worked as a straight swap. Rondo, who has a very tradeable contract, is making $11 million this season. Howard is making approximately $19.3 million.