NBA Draft 2008: What Warriors Fans Can Expect from Richard Hendrix

Nic GulasSenior Analyst IJune 26, 2008

In 2005, Richard Hendrix graduated Athens High School in north Alabama.

After being selected as a McDonald's All-American, Hendrix had a decision to make: either go into the NBA Draft, where he was projected to be a lottery pick, or go to college at in-state Alabama. 

Hendrix opted to pass over the NBA for college, and went to Tuscaloosa. 

Somehow, in those three years, Hendrix's stock dropped like a rock, but his game did not reflect the drop. 

In his three years at Alabama, Hendrix was a force to be reckoned with down low. 

He was an All-SEC selection in his final two seasons at The Capstone and was the leading scorer on the team for those two seasons. 

Now, its all fine and dandy to listen to opinions of him, but what about the cold, hard facts?

Well, in his final season at Alabama, Hendrix averaged a double-double with 17.8 points and 10.1 rebounds a game, only one of fifteen guys in the country to do so. 

He led the SEC in multiple rebounding categories, including offensive rebounds, and took up plenty of room in the middle. 

His one down side is his bad free throw percentage, at 54%, but he reaches the line often enough to make up for his lack of accuracy. 

So its nice to know that he is durable and can perform over a substantial period of time, but how did he perform against the top players and those who were drafted tonight? 

In his two games against Florida this season, former team of 16th overall draft pick Marreese Speights, Hendrix had 24 points and 16 rebounds in the first game of the SEC season, a national broadcast on ESPN. 

In the first round of the SEC Tournament in Atlanta, he managed to score 22 points and pulled in eight rebounds.  

Speights scored a total of 21 points last season against Hendrix and the Tide. 

Speights, who has been called "a tremendous talent" and "never been dominated" in the SEC, was pretty much dominated by Richard.   

In two games against LSU this past season, the former team of 14th overall and fellow Warrior draft pick Anthony Randolph, Richard scored 19 and had 17 rebounds at home, and in a bad team effort in Baton Rouge, he still managed 16 points and 13 rebounds. 

Sure, you can knock on his "lack of height" for his position, you can say that he struggles with free throws, but one thing you can expect from Richard Hendrix every night is that he will give 100% and work for any ball he can get his hands on. 

The Warriors have just picked up one hell of a basketball player, and should feel lucky to have him in their organization and playing for their team in the future.