SAN ANTONIO — Zach Randolph is done campaigning for a new contract. Now that he and the Grizzlies have agreed to terms on a four-year deal that could pay him up to $71 million, he’s looking to get his frontcourt partner Marc Gasol locked up too.
“That’s one of the reasons why I signed,” Randolph said following Monday’s workout at the AT&T Center. “They told me they were going to sign Marc back. That’s what they said.”
Having already signed forward Rudy Gay to a five-year, $85 million deal last summer and point guard Mike Conley to a five-year, $45-million contract extension at the start of the season, getting Gasol on board for the future will enable the Grizzlies – who won for the first time in the postseason in franchise history in Game 1 – to take the next step in their development, according to Randolph.
“The number one thing is to try to win a championship,” he said. “I feel like we’ve got a good enough core with me, Rudy, Marc and Mike to build around us and do something special.
“I think it’s realistic. You’ve seen where we came from to now, where we’re at. This league is so up and down you can compete with anybody and anybody can get beat any given night.”
Having stunned the No. 1 seed San Antonio in the playoff opener, Randolph doesn’t believe the Grizzlies have any reason to think they can’t do more.
“Our goal is just to shock people,” he said. “I ain’t gonna say we’re just gonna win one game. We’re gonna take one game at a time and whatever comes may be. But we’re just gonna go out there and play hard and give it 100 percent.”
The 10-year veteran who has played for four different teams is happy to finally have some stability.
“It feels good to know I’m gonna be in Memphis for another four years. It feels real good.
“A little bit at the beginning of the year I was distracted by it (the lack of a new contract). I put it out of my mind about halfway through the season…I haven’t been thinking about it lately until now. I’m glad that it’s done and I’m staying here. But I definitely want Marc here with us.”