On Thursday afternoon, when it was revealed that the Los Angeles Clippers had traded Lou Williams to the Atlanta Hawks for Rajon Rondo, the reactions were mixed.
An electrifying scorer with a cool demeanor, Williams had been a fan-favorite since arriving in L.A. from Houston in 2017. He was twice named the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year as a Clipper (plus one time before that) and had, the night prior to the trade, scored his 15,000th career point in a win over the Spurs.
Rondo, on the other hand, is a proven playoff asset, renowned for his basketball IQ. And though his time with Atlanta this season has been uneventful (to say the least) there are high hopes that his smarts and leadership can help bring a championship to the long-suffering Clippers, as he did for the Celtics in 2008 and the Lakers in 2020.
Suffice to say, some have applauded the trade while others have poo-pooed it.
For second-year Clippers guard Terance Mann, however, the move was almost cosmically bittersweet. Williams is a friend and a mentor and has played a big role in helping the 6-foot-5 Mann become one of the league’s top up-and-comers.
But Rondo…Rondo is quite literally Mann’s good luck charm.