HoopsHype Zach Randolph rumors

May 28, 2013 Updates

The future of Randolph in Memphis is another question mark after the Grizzlies’ struggles, and Randolph’s in particular, in their four straight defeats to San Antonio. Randolph drew interest from other teams before the Feb. 21 trade deadline, and, with more than $34 million left on his contract over the next two seasons, could well find himself in play to help Memphis build a more balanced team by addressing its ongoing lack of floor-spacers on the perimeter and rotation depth. ESPN.com

But a team with the Grizzlies’ limitations under the salary cap would be wise to at least explore the marketplace for a player of Randolph’s caliber and paycheck, a reality Randolph understands. “I would like to retire a Grizzly and be here,” Randolph said. Asked if he could imagine playing elsewhere, Randolph laughed. “Nah! Not really!” he said. “I’ll take my fan base with me from Memphis, though!” ESPN.com

May 21, 2013 Updates

The 15-man Memphis roster boasts five lefties: Mike Conley, Tayshaun Prince, Zach Randolph, Ed Davis and Tony Wroten. Head coach Lionel Hollins is a lefty, too. All told, that's more than the other three teams combined. The Heat have two southpaws (Chris Bosh and Joel Anthony), the Spurs one (Manu Ginobili) and the Pacers none. In this season's playoffs, lefties have accounted for 46.1% of all minutes played by Memphis players, the second highest percentage in NBA playoff history behind the 46.2% of the 1969 Philadelphia 76ers, according to an analysis by Basketball Reference. During this season's playoffs, lefties have accounted for 48.5% of all Memphis field goals attempted, second in NBA playoff history only to the 48.8% of the 1968 New York Knicks, according to Basketball Reference. Wall Street Journal

May 20, 2013 Updates

Zach Randolph is not hiding it. He knows how badly he played in Game 1 and after pracitce Monday made no bones about how much it affected him. "I apologized to the guys for the way I played, Randolph said. "I have to come out and give them something. "I've been hard on myself. I couldn't sleep last night." Randolph was limping with both knees iced after practice, but told CBSSports.com he's "allright," and the biggest problem is his patience. "I'll feel better once we get the game going," the two-time All-Star said after he went 1-for-8 on Sunday. "I wanted to play today." CBSSports.com

This is a true story about Randolph, though, one that starred Tiago Splitter, Tim Duncan, Matt Bonner and even Boris Diaw as the resident bullies, and it has the Grizzlies forward gritting and grinding his teeth after an ominous sign in the opener. "That was the best defense I've seen on the big fella in a long time; they did a great job," said the Grizzlies' Mike Conley, who was outplayed in his point guard battle with the Spurs' Tony Parker. "He tried to apologize (in the locker room), and we wouldn't accept that. We said, 'It's not you; it's all of us.' He's just saying that he's going to do better, but we've all got to do better defensively, and offensively we've got to move the ball in order to get other guys open like Zach and play our game." Parker, who had eight of his 20 points in the first quarter in which San Antonio led by 17 points, said, "Yeah, we tried to make it hard on him (with a) double-team. Obviously, he's their best scorer. He's a beast inside. (But) we know he's not going to play like that every game." USA Today Sports

May 19, 2013 Updates
May 18, 2013 Updates

“This moment means a lot to me,” Randolph said. “I’m happy, but we still have work to do. I want to win a ring.” Randolph can be the king of colloquialisms when talking about others, such as when he described the defense teammate Tony Allen was applying to Kevin Durant: “Tony’s a dog, man. He’s in the mud.” The Grizzlies marketing department has crafted slogans and campaigns around Randolph’s colorful descriptors and phrases. NBA.com

But he’s mostly bland when talking about himself. It’s a subject best left unto others, like Allen. “I’ve [known] Zach ever since I got in the league, what his skill level was,” said Allen, who joined the Grizzlies a season later in the summer of 2010. “But he was … at first all about going out and getting his. And ever since I got alongside him, he’s done a good job of mixing it up, passing the ball when you don’t have a shot, being more of a vocal leader and just a teddy bear off the court. When I say teddy bear, just a nice guy. He’s the nicest guy in the world. I saw him grow a lot despite what I heard about him previously before I got here.” Previously? “Just rough around the edges, that’s all,” Allen said, chuckling. “But me and him pretty much got the same characteristics. Growing up we overcame a lot. Right now, it’s a big time to do something big and I think that’s what his mindset is right now — trying to do something real big.” NBA.com

The big stage has been a long time coming for Randolph, a player many assumed would have run himself out of the league by now. That’s not the case or even any longer an option. The 12-year veteran has found a home and fulfillment in Memphis. “He just understands the big picture a little bit better. He understands winning better,” Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins said. “I think there are lot of good players in this league that have statistics, that have talent, but never win, never understand that it takes more than their 20 points to win; that it takes moving the basketball, it takes playing defense, it takes being a decoy sometimes. “We just try to challenge him and he accepts being challenged, and he’s risen to the occasion.” NBA.com

May 16, 2013 Updates

With their trademark grit-and-grind mentality, the Memphis Grizzlies are making history for a franchise with little prior postseason success. Zach Randolph had 28 points and 14 rebounds, Mike Conley added 13 points and 11 assists, and the fifth-seeded Grizzlies advanced to the Western Conference finals for the first time in franchise history by beating the Oklahoma City Thunder 88-84 on Wednesday night. "This is the first time, so it definitely means a lot. I'm happy, but we've still got work to do," Randolph said. "I want to win a ring." ESPN.com

May 15, 2013 Updates

“We have to be the aggressors,” Allen said. “We have to stick with what got us to this point. We just want to keep fighting. …They’re going to give it their all. Obviously, they’ve been to the Finals. They don’t want their season to end like this. We just have to be ready for those guys when they come with the first punch.” Memphis Commercial Appeal

May 14, 2013 Updates
May 4, 2013 Updates

Some NBA players genuinely dislike each other. At this point, it’s safe to put Blake Griffin and Zach Randolph at that level. The first-round playoff series between Griffin’s Los Angeles Clippers and Randolph’s Memphis Grizzlies has been defined by physical play, as have their games throughout the regular season. And Blake and Z-Bo have always been at the center of that. In Game 6 of the playoffs, the two feisty big men turned a battle for a rebound into a full-blown wrestling match. Randolph got whistled for a technical, even though it looks like most of the contact was initiated by Griffin. If this series goes to a seventh game, they might have to build the court in the shape of an octagon. For The Win

May 2, 2013 Updates

Asked how Griffin's high right ankle sprain injury might affect the matchup of power forwards when the two teams meet on Friday for Game 6 of their first-round series, Randolph was dismissive, reminding reporters that he was nursing his own injuries. "Banged up?" Randolph said. "I'm banged up. You forgot about my ankle? Banged up. My ankle is as big as a balloon. Talk to the trainers. I'm getting treatment every day. It's the playoffs." ESPN.com

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