Monday, November 8, 2010

Zach Randolph Feasts, Suns Battle But Fall

...No, not in the way you'd suspect, either.

Shaking off a rough performance in a double OT loss against the Suns Friday (a double-double on 3-11 shooting with 8 combined TOs and PFs), Zach wasted no time establishing himself against the likes of (this is not for the weak of heart) Hedo Turkoglu and Hakim Warrick. Robin Lopez hung around for 14 minutes to collect 2 rebounds and allow Randolph to go off on the offensive boards (8 on the game, plenty right over the top of a stationary Robin). It was one of the most effortless 20-20 performances of which I've ever been witness.

Then again, it must have seemed a breeze for Z-Bo to put up such a performance after going up against the likes of Sam Dalembert and DeMarcus Cousins, whom he torched for 20-11 on 8 of 15 shooting on the second night of a back to back after playing 42 minutes against Phoenix (whom he struggled against, as previously mentioned). Fade-away jumpers over the out-stretched arms of Hakim Warrick, physical offensive boards over Robin Lopez, hitting 5 of 6 attempts at the line after easily establishing position and going strong to the rim. The Suns held Randolph to only 6 points in the 2nd half, but surrendered the same 10 boards to him that they did in the 1st half.

If anything, the lack of 2nd half offensive dominance by Randolph was due more to choice from the Grizzlies than to the Suns playing him all that much better. Admittedly, late doubles and a better job denying him helped some, but Z-Bo was completely dominate in this game. Besides hitting a jump hook over Hakim Warrick with 2 seconds left on the shot clock as to stop a late Suns run Z-Bo added 3 steals, 2 of which helped to break offensive Suns runs. I applaud him for dominating the Suns, though their haplessness on the inside is clearly their greatest weakness.

Tonight, the Suns showed the factor that could kill their playoffs hopes - Poor interior presence and no hope to draw fouls on an opposing team's best post player (Miss you, Amar'e). The Grizzlies, meanwhile, illustrated why they could be a darkhorse for a low playoff seeding - Zach Randolph and his ability to fill up the bucket while dominating the boards.

1 comment:

  1. The small amount of defense Phoenix, and Robin Lopez, found late last season has deserted em.