Without Gasol, Grizzlies lean on Randolph vs. C's

Without Gasol, Grizzlies lean on Randolph vs. C's
November 27, 2013, 7:45 pm
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Zach Randolph is averaging 21.6 points in Memphis victories, 10.9 points in losses.

(AP Photo)

BOSTON — Even with Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol in the lineup, Zach Randolph is used to drawing attention on the floor.

But without Gasol, who is out with a Grade-2 knee sprain, Randolph becomes an even bigger part of the Memphis game plan.

So, for all the talk about what the Celtics have to do to extend their winning streak to three in a row Wednesday night, limiting Randolph has to be their No. 1 priority.

And since the Celtics lost to the Grizzlies earlier this month, Randolph has steadily improved.

"The biggest difference from what I can see from the first time we played them," said Celtics coach Brad Stevens, "is how involved Randolph is."

The contrast in his play in wins versus losses for Memphis is undeniable.

In Memphis' seven victories this season, Randolph has averaged 21.6 points, 10.9 rebounds, while shooting 55.5 percent from the field.

Those numbers take a precipitous drop in losses, with Randolph scoring just 10.9 points to go with 7.6 rebounds, while connecting on just 43 percent of his shots.

Randolph admits not having Gasol has made his job tougher in so many areas.

"Marc's a big part of this team, both ends," Randolph told CSNNE.com. "He relieves me some [offensively]. Everybody can't just ... I got another threat down there. But that's alright. We just have to keep playing."

For Randolph, he sees a need to be more unpredictable when he has the ball offensively.

"I have to take my time," he said. "Or go fast or face them up. I have to make adjustments, and I will [tonight]."

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