Basketball superstar gives back to community with Camp Rondo - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Basketball superstar gives back to community with Camp Rondo

By Charla Young

LOUISVILLE (WAVE) -- Summer is here and many kids will be headed to sports camps. But some local kids had the chance to work one on one with an NBA player. University of Kentucky standout and Boston Celtics player Rajon Rondo held his first camp for the summer in Louisville's California neighborhood. As WAVE 3's Charla Young reports, he used the time to pass along his work ethics and skills to hundreds of kids.

Watching a game of basketball at the St. Stephen Family Life Center, it's hard to recognize Rajon Rondo because, without his Boston Celtics or UK jersey, Rondo looks like one of the kids.

In fact, he says "I'm a kid. I'm only 21."

After a short career with the UK Wildcats, Rajon turned pro, and was the number one draft pick for the Celtics. And after only a year of playing in the NBA, he's now a part of its starting five. 

Rondo told us he knew he'd play sports, but basketball wasn't his first choice. "I always thought I'd be a professional football player, 'cause I love football, I played it since I was six. But when I got to high school, I decided to narrow it down to one sport, which was basketball."

And that decision turned out to be the right one. Now Rondo is giving back, sponsoring a basketball designed to educate and empower youth.

"Before I got drafted, I knew I wanted to give back to the community," Rondo said. "There's one (camp) in the west end, and one in the east end, so all the kids can come and have a great experience."

St. Stephen Pastor Kevin Cosby says Rondo's camp is right on time. "The summertime is very tempting for kids. They tend to get in trouble, so when you can have alternative activities that are positive, that profile achievers like Brother Rondo, then that's exciting."

The key to success is values," Rondo said. "What is destroying our kids is media, movies and music. So whenever we can counter these values with some alternative values that focus on discipline, teamwork, morals and educations, then that's positive and it creates a better society."

The camp at St. Stephen was just Rondo's first camp. Others are scheduled in July and August at Hoops on Blankenblaker Lane. The cost is $99. For more information, visit www.CampRondo.com.

Online Reporter: Charla Young

Online Producer: Michael Dever