Maggette Starts Over Randolph, For Now
"Not this again," seemed to be the refrain.
Randolph is considered the Warriors' brightest young star and figured to be a shoe-in to start at at the four this season. But now that Maggette's the man -- at least for now -- it's only natural to wonder whether Randolph is back in Nellie's doghouse, a place Randolph spent a good chunk of his rookie season.
At least right now, that doesn't seem to be the case. Randolph didn't even take the news as a demotion, really. He said his back hasn't been right most of the preseason, and the injury has affected his play. He sat out the Warriors' final preseason game on Thursday night against the Hornets.
Randolph thinks he'll be back in the starting lineup by Wednesday's regular-season opener against the Rockets, but anyone who knows Nelson knows that isn't a given.
"It wasn't news at all," Randolph said. "I worked hard during the offseason. It's just a little thing. I've got to get back healthy. Hopefully, I'll be right by Wednesday. I'm just not explosive right now, not able to move how I want to because of my back."
Nelson said he realizes Randolph isn't 100 percent right now, but he's looking at production, bottom line.
"He's going to have to play a certain way to be effective for us and he knows how he needs to play," Nelson said. "He did that the first two or three [preseason] games and then he kind of got away from it. I don't know if it was injuries or what."
Nelson said fans shouldn't view all of this as Randolph taking a step back. Then again, you can tell Nelson is looking for more consistency.
"When he does the things we need him to do, play at a high level, why, he's going to get plenty of playing time," Nelson said. "It's going to be tough to keep him off (the floor). But he's going to have to be evaluated by his number of rebounds. That's the main thing. And his running, defense and shot-blocking. The things he does very well are the things we want him to do."
Whether or not Randolph does that as a starter remains to be seen.
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