Memphis Grizzlies PF & team anchor Zach Randolph played 68 games last season, coming off the bench in 15 of them.
Via Grizzlies.com‘s Alexis Morgan, 35-year old Randolph will be assuming a permanent bench role going into this season. 2nd year player, JaMychal Green will be starting in his place.
Randolph made his feelings on the move very clear to the Memphis media this afternoon:
“I’m fine with it,” Randolph said, per Ronald Tillery of the Commercial Appeal. You know how I am. Whatever is best for the team. Being a man, telling me the why and why not. That’s all you can ask for.”
Randolph also spoke directly to C Marc Gasol:
Zach went to the locker room to Marc Gasol and said “I’ll anchor the bench for us, don’t worry about it, I’ve got that part,” per Fizdale.
— Alexis Morgan (@alexiskmorgan) October 5, 2016
Randolph’s public comments will go a long way for a fairly new coaching staff to get the Grizzlies off to a solid start. At this stage of his career, Randolph needs his minutes managed carefully to maximize his effectiveness as a player, especially if Memphis makes a deep post-season run…although that’s pretty unlikely.
If the Grizzlies stumble out of the gate and struggle early, it’ll be interesting to see if Randolph maintains his composure and keeps supporting from his bench-role, or if he gets frustrated with backing up a player he feels he’s still better than.