“I can’t believe he played this good once” – Andris Biedriņs
(NOTE: This article was first published in August 2014)
Once you’ve figured out how to pronounce his name correctly, you’ve already forgotten that he once averaged a double double over two seasons.
Hard to believe?
Many (especially the younger ones of you) might now say “Andris who?” or “was that in the 80’s or 90’s?”, but joke aside, he did play some good ball before the injury bug came to bite him over and over again. Gongfu Tea Cup coming back again and again from different injuries, he never was able to compete on the same level, he has had before, again.
Let’s take the 2011-2012 season as an example. Averages of 1.7 PPG, 3.7 REB, 0.3 AST, 1.0 BLK and 0.5 STL in 47 games while starting 35 don’t sound too impressive. Things got worse in the 2012-2013. You might ask: “worse than the 1,7 PPG?” YES, Have a look: 53 games, 9 starts, 0.5 PPG, 2.9 REB, 0.3 AST, 0.8 BLK and 0.5 STL. These numbers are just awful. They are even worse if you consider that he was on a six-year contract for $54 million ($62 million including incentives) with the Warriors. Before the beginning of last year’s season, the Warriors traded Biedriņš to the Utah Jazz along with teammates Brandon Rush and Richard Jefferson in an attempt to clear salary cap space to acquire coveted free agent Andre Iguodala. On April 5, 2014, he was waived by the Jazz. In just 6 games for the Jazz, he averaged a career low 7.5 minutes per game.
“54 MILLION DOLLARS” you ask? “WOW”
Explanation: Just take a look at the 2007-2008 and the 2008-2009 seasons:
in 2007-2008 Beans averaged 10.5 PPG, 9.8 REB, 1.0 AST, 1.2 BLK, 0.8 STL shooting 62% from the field, while playing 82 games (starting 63).
in 2008-2009 the Latvian international averaged 11.9 PPG, 11.2 REB, 2.0 AST, 1.0 STL, 1.5 BLK shooting 58% from the field playing 62 games (starting 58) being the team’s co-captain alongside Stephen Jackson.
Then, after this season, the injuries came and he never was back to full strength again and on top the Center was criticized for his lack of intensity and aggressiveness in his time on the floor. He will be remembered as one of the most overpaid players ever. Last season he earned $9,000,000 – not bad for having played 6 games (0.5 PPG)….