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Ekpe Udoh Isn't Superman, But That's OK

“The biggest thing with Ekpe is that he hasn’t played games,” coach Keith Smart said. "I’m not expecting anything super. Anything he does is a plus as he tries to develop his identity as a basketball player in the NBA.

“He might turn out to be Superman, but that doesn’t happen that often.”

Rusty Simmons of SF Chronicle reports on how Coach Keith Smart and current GM Larry Riley are feeling after yesterday’s surprise play by Ekpe Udoh. It’s probably in fan and the Warriors best interest to not over-hype the young kid like they’ve done in the past anointing every new Warrior as ‘the future’ — setting up ridiculous expectations that players can’t meet and merely irking fans more than anything, duped into believing we had the missing piece in “x” player. Simmons seemed to think the same:

The Warriors realize they did Udoh a little disservice amid losing 12 of 13 games, consistently trumpeting “wait until we get healthy.” Some fans bought in, so naturally they want to see the “rescuer.”

Udoh doesn’t need to be Superman, per se. But the Warriors clearly need a hero to step up given how inconsistent everyone has been playing. Winning clearly takes a team effort. And Udoh has been out for quite a bit, so granted he’ll need time to get into game shape. But asking Udoh, a relatively high lottery pick, to be productive — maybe not Superman but something pretty great — shouldn’t be out of our realm of imagination.

I’m in agreement that rushing Udoh isn’t a good idea (like rushing Jeremy Lin). But as a lottery pick, there should be some expectations set. 20-10 seems like too much to ask, but with the veterans like Vladimir Radmanovic and Dorell Wright committing some of the most insane turnovers and mental mistakes, what difference is it if it’s Ekpe Udoh?