Julius Randle’s offensive game has exploded this season for the New York Knicks. Randle’s devastatingly imposing style of play on both ends of the court wears down whoever is left with the tough task of guarding the star power forward. Then the tired and battered opponent is susceptible to become another victim invited to “Randle’s Island” later on in the game, defending an isolated Julius Randle who has the ability to torch anybody from three levels. An invitation to guard the NBA’s 2020-21 Most Improved Player Award winner in an isolation situation has become a defender’s worst nightmare. Therefore, teams rather send a double team or flat out prevent Randle from getting the basketball just like the Atlanta Hawks did during game one of their first round playoff series.


Brandon Dill-Associated Press

Two Relentless Attackers, Barrett & Randle, Continue to Cause Havoc for Opposing Defenses.

Julius Randle and RJ Barrett are both relentless strong lefty attackers. Both have motors to will their team to victory. The two are also shooting the three at a very high level, making it difficult for defenses to contain both at the same time. Randle and Barrett’s phenomenal play for the Knicks this season landed them on a SLAM magazine front cover.

There’s a Party on Randle’s Island this Season and No Defender is Safe.

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A verse from the late artist by the name of Prodigy from his song “Survival of the Fittest” stated “There’s a war going on outside no man is safe from”. The same mindset can easily be applied to “Randle’s Island” regarding anybody defending Julius Randle when he’s in the zone scoring the basketball from all three levels. Julius Randle and Carmelo Anthony did offseason work together. Melo showed Randle some pointers regarding isolation attacks in the mid-range. They played one on one against each other as well. Randle obviously relished the opportunity to pick Carmelo Anthony’s brain, now Randle has gotten very creative with his jab step along with his increased offensive isolation arsenal. Julius Randle’s offensive bag is now heavier than most would’ve ever predicted due to hard work and determination. The Knicks power forward counted last season as a learning experience during a podcast with Fat Joe in which the artist reigned Randle as “King of New York”.

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“Randle’s Island” has proven to guarantee the Knicks multiple victories lately especially during the 9-game winning streak which ran its course from April 9th through April 24th. During that span, Julius Randle averaged 30.1-points, 9.1-rebounds to go along with 6.2-assists and 1.3-steals per game. The 6’9 250 pound powerhouse expanded his offensive repertoire making it an extremely difficult matchup for opposing defenders and coaches. Opposing teams send the double team to Randle and the former Kentucky star now has the patience to make proper reads to counter defensive attacks due to preparation from the Knicks savvy coaching staff.

During the 2020-21 late season west coast road trip, strong leadership and closing ability was shown by Randle. The point-forward also displayed clutch leadership against the San Antonio Spurs on May 13th, in a revenge game at Madison Square Garden with Derrick Rose out due to an ankle injury. Do to Randle’splay, the Knicks are taken much more seriously by the competition around the league. The first thing many teams compliment the Knicks on is their effort level for 48-minutes. Opposing coaches claim that going against the Knicks, one should expect playoff intensity every possession on both ends of the court. The men sporting the orange and blue rarely take possessions off due to their coach and their leading top three players in Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, and Derrick Rose. There’s a level of forcefulness the Knicks have been playing with, led by Julius Randle. Getting to the free throw line is another devastating part of “Randle’s Island”. His knack for creating and-one opportunities is special. Teams overcommitting to number 30 must do so smartly due to other Knick teammates waiting on the perimeter to shoot the basketball like RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, Alec Burks, Derrick Rose, and Reggie Bullock. Teams must tread carefully these days against the explosive Julius Randle led Knicks.

Julius Randle and the Knicks Look for Redemption Against Atlanta Hawks.

Randle and the Knicks clinched 4th seed after beating the short-handed Celtics at Madison Square on May 16th. Randle averaged 37.3-points against the Hawks. The Knicks also swept the Hawks 3-0 this season. New York’s favorite team will look to redeem themselves against Trae Young and the Hawks in game two at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday. It is expected that Julius Randle will definitely be on Nate McMillan’s chalkboard once again. The newest NBA’s 2020-21 Most Improved Player Award winner appeared rusty during a game one loss at MSG, only scoring 15-points on 6-23-shooting from the field. One can also credit Randle’s struggles to Nate McMillan’s defensive scheme. Game two will reveal what Knicks coach, Tom Thibodeau has in store for the Hawks with Randle at the forefront.

Julius Randle Wins 2020-21 NBA Most Improved Player Award.

Julius Randle has been phenomenal this season. He’s pretty much the reason the Knicks are in the 2021 NBA Playoffs. Although the Knicks lost game one to the Hawks, many should expect Randle and company to come out with full force in Game two in front of an extremely raucous Madison Square Garden sold out crowd.

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