His defense box plus/minus is in the positive, at 0.6.
He may be only playing just over 23 minutes per game, but letting Randolph be “the guy” during that reduced time might be the best move that rookie coach David Fizdale has made this season.
He’s spearheaded the bench offense that’s seventh in the NBA in scoring at 40.3 points per game,
Oct 30, 2016; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph sits on the bench during the first quarter against the Washington Wizards at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
Fizdale has said he’d like to see Zach Randolph compete for the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year
award, and while I was skeptical at first, Randolph has made be a believer that this could be possible. Yes, Randolph’s usage rate (and, in turn, his scoring) will likely take a dip once Chandler Parsons and Tony Allen make their season debuts, bumping the likes of Andrew Harrison and Jarrell Martin to the bench.
But do you want to know what means even more than an arbitrary award? Wins.
And that’s why Randolph is OK with playing the lowest number of minutes per game since his sophomore year in the NBA; it’s allowing him to excel in owning what’s arguably the most important role on the Memphis Grizzlies.
Here’s to Zach Randolph’s newfound confidence and many more jab-steps to come.