Who is Zach Randolph? It's a difficult question to answer. On the one hand, he's one of the craftiest and skillful NBA players of the last decade. Despite the fact that he isn't fast and can't jump, he's a double-double waiting to happen every single night. On the other hand, he's had a laundry list of issues off the court that have earned him quite the reputation. It's sort of amazing his career has withstood all the turmoil. But, it's not even as simple as that. He's also evolved as both a player and as a person over the course of the last ten years, to the point that it's hard to believe some of the things he says and does now considering the way he used to act.
In an excellent new profile piece on Z-Bo, Grantland's Jonathan Abrams attempts to find out exactly who Randolph is. So, he talks to Randolph's former coaches, teammates, advisors, and, of course, Randolph himself to find out what makes him tick. And, in doing so, he also reveals a bunch of really interesting stories about Randolph, including one about the time he asked Steve Kerr when the Trail Blazers would be off for Christmas break during his rookie season (if you remember, Kerr talked that encounter—without naming Randolph—in a Grantland piece earlier this year). It's fascinating stuff.
Check out the story over here. You might not end up any closer to finding out who Zach Randolph actually is. But, you will be entertained by Abrams as he tries to make sense of it all.