The big story in Boston sports on Tuesday was Rajon Rondo’s decision to not travel with the team from Los Angeles to Sacramento so that he could hold a 28th birthday party for himself in Los Angeles.
Rondo wasn’t going to play in Sacramento, so his missing the game isn’t a big deal. Yet he apparently did not receive permission from the team and will be or already has been spoken to by Celtics president Danny Ainge about the matter.
After the topic was debated and rehashed for almost the entire day, Michael Felger, Tony Massarotti and Marc Bertrand realized something: Who celebrates their birthday?
“There was a time when [birthdays] meant something to me, and then I turned — I don’t know — 12? Fifteen?” Mazz said.
“Oh, God. Birthdays!” Felger said. “And then you have to go to someone’s birthday party. Like, you’ve got a weekend with your kids, or your family, or it’s a summer weekend and it’s like, our time is so flipping valuable, and then I gotta go to your — what? Your birthday party? Because it’s your birthday? Weeee! We get to sing happy birthday! That’s what we’re doing? Your birthday. Please, please show some decorum, show some consideration. Don’t have birthday parties for yourself and impose on all of us so we can come and sing you happy birthday.
“Are you really kidding me? So this is this important to Rondo that he gets to celebrate his own 28th birthday? You loser.”
Mazz went on to explain that birthdays are not special.
“Everybody has one,” Mazz said. “So that means that your birthday and my birthday are worth the same, which means they’re worth zero.”
Bertrand stepped in to defend the sacred right of birthday celebrations.
“Why do you gotta hate on Rondo because he wanted to play a little Whac-A-Mole?” Bertrand said. “A little skee-ball.”
“Did he take everybody to the roller rink?” Felger asked.
“The bouncy house!” Mazz said. “Maybe they did bumper cars, who knows, the whole nine yards. Pop-a-shot!”
“It’s just so insane,” Felger said. “And he flew in family? Like, wife, kids, family flew out to L.A. He had it on the Saturday night knowing the game was on the schedule, so it’s that important to celebrate your birthday? You all schlep out to Los Angeles? God, that is just so lame!”
“A little Cruisin’ USA, a little driving game,” Bertand added to make the case.
“Your birthday? This is what we’re doing? I’ve got to go out now for your birthday?” Felger continued. “I could be home with my kids, I could be home relaxing, I could have a night out — nope. Someone’s birthday. Birthday!”
“No, really, I think that’s a splendid reason for the captain of the team to miss a flight. Excellent. Terrific,” Mazz said. “Not only that, but a cross-country trip, the longest type of road trip that any team goes on, and you’re supposed to and you’re expected to leapfrog from place to place together. That’s what a team does. You travel together. Bill Parcells got all kinds of grief for not flying home from the Super Bowl with the team, but Rondo blows off L.A. to Sacramento, and it’s OK?”
“Well,” Felger reasoned, “it was his birthday. It’s an important day.”
It’s well known that Rondo and former C’s head coach Doc Rivers used to butt heads quite a bit, and Mazz wondered what Doc must be thinking about the situation now. Then, Mazz realized, “[Rivers] is in L.A. Now that I think of it, maybe Doc Rivers went to the party. Maybe he got to jump in the bouncy house without his shoes on.”
Felger said he had just heard an ESPN show say that Rondo had every right to celebrate his birthday with his family in L.A.
“Like it’s that important? His 28th birthday? That, to me, just please, please, what are we doing?” Felger said. “Just do it on your own time. We’ll all do it on our time, and we’ll all have more time for ourselves because we’re not worried about someone’s stinking birthday.”
Beetle wanted to remind everyone that Felger’s birthday is Aug. 6, just in case anyone wants to throw him a big party.