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Aldridge: I Was Clueless to Being Randolph’s Successor

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Updated 10 months ago on
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All in all, (Memphis Grizzlies Zach) Randolph remembered, they intended for this player to one day assume the mantle as the next dominant Trail Blazers power forward, a role Randolph then occupied, that had been handed down from (Rasheed) Wallace before him. LaMarcus Aldridge would extend a proud lineage. He was “up next.”

“Um, I’m glad Zach knew, because when I was drafted, all I heard was, ‘He’s a project, he’s soft,'” Aldridge said this week, as his Trail Blazers trail Randolph’s Grizzlies 2-0 in a Western Conference first-round series that resumes Saturday at Portland’s Moda Center. “And I didn’t play [that first year]. I was in and out of the lineup. So I’m glad Zach knew, because I definitely didn’t know.”

Aldridge said he’d love it if the story was a simple one — Randolph and the team welcomed him with open arms, preparing him for his destined role as the franchise’s prized post player. “I wish I could say that,” Aldridge said. “I want to give you that story so bad. But I’m trying to tell you, they did not believe in me in the beginning. I was a ‘project.'”

via Baxter Holmes of ESPN

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