In a great example of honesty being the best policy, new Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut laid it on the line for Andris Biedrins. At Warriors Media Day on October 1, Bogut was asked about his opinion on the once-promising Latvian big man. Bogut told CSN Insider Matt Steinmetz the following:
He just needs to realize that’s he’s not a bad basketball player. Regardless of what people say, he can help us. My message to him would be: You can help us. What people say? Who cares? You proved that (you could play) a couple of years ago. No excuse why he can’t do it now…Whatever your past coaches, whatever your past general managers, whatever the past fans have said, who cares? He can help us. I think if he hears that from us, it will help him…We need to get his confidence level back to where he can help us. He’s 7-foot, he can move, he’s mobile. He can rebound. He can block shots. We need to get him to do it again.
Well said, Andy.
At this point, after three consecutive years of Biedrins showing up to Warriors camp talking about how his mentality has changed, it’s time for someone to give him a little push. Or maybe a giant shove. Bogut could be the man to do that.
It’s entirely possible that Biedrins is such a soft touch mentally that he won’t respond to being challenged by teammates. After all, former coach Don Nelson’s tough love approach is largely responsible for Biedrins’ career freefall. But with virtually nothing left to lose, Bogut’s honesty and encouragement could help Biedrins find himself again.
Either way, at least Bogut’s not sugarcoating it. Biedrins does need to get over himself and realize that he’s not a bad basketball player. Until he believes that himself, nobody else will.