Nelson vs. Randolph? If it’s true, this team’s imploding
By Geoff Lepper
It’s looking more and more like the Warriors are going to, once again, end up disintegrating into a cloud of debris.
If, as ESPN’s Chris Broussard says, coach Don Nelson told rookie forward Anthony Randolph to have his agent explore potential trades, then things have come unglued to a point that would probably be unprecedented in franchise history . . . if only this franchise wasn’t the Warriors.
Is Broussard’s report accurate? I don’t know. Can I see Nelson saying something like that to Randolph? Absolutely. Without question. When Nellie gets down on a player — consistently down, not just for a two-week stretch of juggling the rotation or somesuch — it’s pretty much impossible to dig yourself out of that hole.
I had an interesting conversation recently with a Nelson confidant about the Warriors’ pick in this year’s draft. This person said that Nelson’s much-hyped interest in Jason Thompson — so well-hyped that it seemed it could only be a smokescreen — was very, very real. In fact, Nelson had to be talked down from Thompson and into Randolph by Chris Mullin and others in the days leading up to the draft.
In retrospect, I can see why Nelson was so much more interested in Thompson, who was taken by the Kings with the No. 12 selection. Thompson doesn’t have the 3-point range that Al Harrington offered, but he has a decent enough mid-range jumper and was ready to go after four years at Rider — meaning that having Thompson on board would have made it that much easier to trade Harrington before the season began.
It also helps to explain why Nelson — again, assuming Broussard’s reporting is correct — can so cavalierly toss aside the No. 14 pick in Randolph.
That being said, it’s one thing for the coach to decide he has no use for a player. But when that coach makes it so patently obvious to all other clubs, how you possibly get decent value? Nelson’s unbridled disdain for Marcus Williams has made it such that the Warriors can’t even sell him off for 50 cents on the dollar.
Given that fact, why shop Randolph now? Why not give him some playing time and showcase him this month before trying to dump him? Why not wait until the summer, let him put up some big numbers in Vegas and build back some stock? It just makes no sense.
I’ve said it before in this space: The best move the Warriors have made in the second Nelson era — the eight-player trade with Indiana — was born of three competing desires all landing on the same deal. There was team president Robert Rowell, looking to regain lost flexibility under the salary cap. There was Nelson, delivering a harsh truth about the games of two former centerpieces of the roster, Troy Murphy and Mike Dunleavy. And there was Mullin, who had been coveting Harrington for years and finally took advantage of the Pacers’ angst to get him — and added the guy who turned out to be the best player in the deal, Stephen Jackson.
Now that Mullin has been marginalized, Pete D’Alessandro whacked and nobody left to rein Nelson in other than Rowell, it’s unclear where this team is going. But it sure seems likely it’s going to be in pieces before its arrival.
9 Responses to “Nelson vs. Randolph? If it’s true, this team’s imploding”
I was on Yahoo and found your blog. Read a few of your other posts. Good work. I am looking forward to reading more from you in the future.
cheesy poofs December 19th, 2008 at 8:32 pm
well at least we can take solace that Nellie’s GM acumen is still sharp. Jason Thompson > Randolph.
Anthony Randolph is the basketball version of Vernon Davis.
THIZZ-A-LOT December 19th, 2008 at 8:50 pm
If he does get traded im so done with the Warrios until Nelsons gone! I will buy Randolphs new jersey and root for him to clown the hell out of us. What did Warriors fans do to deserve this? Fire Nelson! Man i wish we had some real journalists to call Nelson and Rowell on this crap, but no, we only have Cohn man enough to say something.
Anthony Randolph December 19th, 2008 at 9:47 pm
Nelson is a stooge. Get me the hell out of here!!! -AR
i knew Nellie was doing this on purpose….P.O.S….ruining the team..
Nelson’s totally lost it. We’re screwed — for years. What an ignorant, egotistical, stiff-necked twit.
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