Sources: Rajon Rondo signs one-year deal with Pelicans

Rajon Rondo averaged 7.8 points, 6.7 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 69 games last season. (AP)

Free-agent guard Rajon Rondo has signed a one-year, $3.3 million deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, league sources told The Vertical.

Rondo met with the Pelicans last Thursday and again Saturday in Atlanta before committing to a contract with New Orleans, league sources told The Vertical. Rondo, a four-time NBA All-Star, has met with Pelicans general manager Dell Demps and head coach Alvin Gentry and has strong relationships with star center DeMarcus Cousins and assistant coach Darren Erman.

Rondo played for the Chicago Bulls last season, averaging 7.8 points, 6.7 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 69 games. He was in and out of the Bulls’ rotation at times, but was looked upon as a leader for younger Bulls players. Rondo flourished near the end of the season to lead Chicago to a 2-0 series lead over the top-seeded Boston Celtics in the first round of the playoffs before suffering a broken thumb. Boston went on to win the series 4-2.

Rondo will have an opportunity to start at point guard alongside Jrue Holiday in the backcourt. Rondo is expected to be an additional player who can run an offense centered around Anthony Davis and Cousins. For the Pelicans, who are nearing the luxury tax, using a contract exception on Rondo meant identifying a potential difference-maker. Rondo also is due to earn $3 million from his Bulls contract for 2017-18.

Rondo, 31, has averaged 10.7 points, 8.5 assists and 4.9 rebounds in 11 NBA seasons for Boston, Dallas, Sacramento and Chicago. He was a starter on the Celtics’ 2008 championship team.

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