You’re Scaring The Kids, Nellie

But a potential Wolves candidate with even more experience unexpectedly surfaced Tuesday when NBA coaching sources said that Don Nelson — the winningest coach in league history — is open to a return to the bench and intrigued by the talent on Minnesota’s roster.

Marc Stein – Sources: Wolves interest Don Nelson

Do you hear that?

That’s the sound of Anthony Randolph’s screams as he runs to anywhere. Anywhere that doesn’t occupy his former tormentor. After years of public praise and equally public neglect from Nelson, it’s fairly obvious that Randolph will have some reservations to a potential Nelson signing. After all, he’s the one who pressured Randolph into what he is now: a positionless freak (pejorative) with a diverse set of skills that add up to very little at the moment.

Nelson’s treatment of Randolph in his formative years in Oakland should already raise red flags for Nelson’s viability in Minnesota. One day you’re lauded in front of the media, the next you’re benched for the entire game. One moment you’re snagging double-doubles easily, then before you know it you’ve been replaced by a decrepit Mikki Moore. I don’t think that sends a good message to the kids.

The bizarre volatility, impatience, and stubbornness Nelson showcased in his last stint with the Warriors bordered on psychological torture. Now, I’ve used Randolph as the primary example in this case, and he definitely isn’t a vital part of Minnesota’s core. But rookies Ricky Rubio and Derrick Williams are. Luckily, both are players who can thrive in Nellie’s frenetic system. Except that’s what we said about Randolph, a player who in theory should’ve been the Nelson archetype. But he was benched and shunned and shipped off to obscurity. At some point, it’s not good enough to be a player who fits a system — especially when the system is unstable.

So what happens when either the kids aren’t alright or when the onset of Nellie’s senility manifests itself into something far more troubling than what we witnessed in 09-10? Do Mikki Moore and Acie Law make their triumphant return? We might not be dealing with a mad scientist anymore; only the madness. There’s enough of that in the franchise without Nelson.

And seriously, just think of the children.  Poor Anthony Randolph is probably cradling himself in a forest somewhere.

Seth Carstens