A 16-year veteran, Randolph maintained a steady statistical output last season, even though Grizzlies head coach David Fizdale moved him into a new role as the team’s sixth man.
“You know how I am,” Randolph said when Fizdale revealed his new role, according to the Commercial Appeal‘s Ronald Tillery. “Whatever is best for the team. I feel like I can be a starter, of course, and carry a team like I did last year. But I’m being positive and staying ready. If Coach [Fizdale] wants me to play 10 minutes, I’ll come in and play the hardest 10 minutes.”
In 24.5 minutes per game off the bench, Randolph averaged 14.1 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists while shooting 44.9 percent from the field. According to Basketball-Reference.com, Randolph was the only player in the NBA last season to post at least 14 points and eight boards in fewer than 25 minutes a night.
“It has been seamless,” Fizdale said of the change, according to ESPN.com’s Tim MacMahon. “He has never bickered once to the press—not one time. You can go back through every paper, article or anything and he never complained. There were days when he was frustrated. He just stayed with it, and he’s embraced it.”
Now headed to the Kings, Randolph should continue to embrace that approach as he gets ready to contribute off the pine for a bench mob that ranked 12th in scoring last season.
And even though adjusting to new surroundings and a fresh scheme can be a challenge, Randolph’s veteran savvy and willingness to adapt should serve him well as he enters the twilight of his career.
Those traits will also be a plus in the locker room as the Kings continue to look for veterans who can lead by example and help direct them in a positive direction as their rebuild continues.
Read more NBA news on BleacherReport.com