Jordan Crawford knew this day was coming sooner or later.

Rajon Rondo will be back in the starting lineup very soon - as early as Friday's game against the Los Angeles Lakers - which means Crawford will go back to the bench.

"I just take on a new role," said Crawford, the Celtics' leader in assists. "I still want to provide for the team any way I can. You knew it was coming. Just accept it and try to play better basketball."

That would certainly bode well for Crawford and the Celtics, losers of nine in a row.

And with Rondo's return, Crawford finds himself with added competition coming off the bench since Boston traded for Jerryd Bayless.

But in many ways, Crawford has the advantage. For starters, there's his shear ability to score points in a variety of ways.

Bayless has a similar skill and like Crawford, he too can play some at point guard.

While his minutes will be cut, Crawford has done plenty since Rondo has been out to prove himself as a viable option for Stevens to turn to going forward.

"It was good to show what I could do, for the time that I got," Crawford said. "I just want to stay consistent when Rondo comes back. That's a big player that we need. We need that wisdom he (has), leadership, another playmaker to make it easy on me and get easier shots for me and other players on the team. It's great to have him."

Crawford speaks of Rondo's return from the perspective of a player who has already navigated the choppy waters that arise when an injured player returns to the lineup, as well as how to handle lots of losses.