The ‘A Study in Green’ series turns to a late-season acquisition this week, someone Celtics fans admired for his hustle and effort to put his body on the line for his team; Shavlik Randolph (aka #ShavKill).
After dominating as the leading scorer for the entire Chinese Basketball Association for the 2012/13 season, the Celtics signed Randolph to two 10-day contracts in February and March. Many didn’t know what the man could bring to the table, but once he found himself a spot in the rotation he was instantly noticed.
Although he only appeared in 16 games across the NBA season, Randolph proved himself to be an excellent rebounder. Sloan Piva of Yahoo! Sports noted if Randolph’s games had qualified for statistical leads, he would have been rated as a top 10 rebounder per possession in the NBA.
this guy grabs over 20 percent of all missed shots while he’s on the floor
The all-out effort wasn’t just for rebounding either, stepping up for charges and making rotations on the defensive end. Doc Rivers noted Shavlik was leading with his head, due to blood noses and countless falls to the floor. Randolph illustrated the kind of energy big man the Celtics had been in desperate need of since rookie Jared Sullinger had gone down with a season-ending back injury in February.
During his sixth NBA season, Shavlik posted a career high 16 points against the Cavaliers in April, and a career-equalling 13 rebounds against the Hawks at the end of March.
For such a low-cost and low-risk player, Randolph proved to be a very nice addition for the last month of the regular season, with no real negatives to speak of. However, due to Doc Rivers’ desire to cut his Playoff rotation to only 7 or 8 players, Randolph barely got a look at the court for the Celtics’ short 6 game post-season run, posting a total 3 minutes of playing time.
While Randolph was only around the Celtics for the latter part of the season, he proved to be an energy guy with a great basketball IQ over that period. With the Celtics declining to pick up his option on the 1st of August for the 2013/14 season, I personally believe Shavlik will be missed. He has the potential to become a regular rotational big man, hustling for those boards and putting his body on the line for his team. If the Celtics don’t make roster space and invite Shavlik to training camp, I hope to see him do well with another team in the NBA.
Let us know what you thought of Shavlik’s short season by dropping a comment below!