Randle: He Needs to Move Forward

After making All-NBA, Julius Randle had another blunder in the Postseason. Therefore, Randle needs to figure out how to adjust his game better in the playoffs. With the emergence of star Jalen Brunson, Julius must find a way to perform better. If he does, Randle and Brunson can get the Knicks to the next level. So, how does Randle improve?

Last Season Stats 

Julius had good stats in the Regular Season. He led the Knicks in scoring at 25.1 points a game and in rebounding at ten rebounds. His shooting splits were decent at 46/34/76. Nevertheless, he produced for the Knicks and played 77 of the 82 games. Additionally, his turnovers were down from the season before. Finally, his two-point field goal percentage was seven percentage points more than a year ago. He was an All-Star and All-NBA based on his performances from the 2023 Season

Unfortunately, his success did not translate to the playoffs. All of his stats dipped tremendously when the playoffs rolled around. In ten playoff games, Randle only averaged 16.6 points. His shooting splits were 37/26/71, so Randle’s efficiency dipped. More importantly, his rebounds fell from 10 to 8.3, and his turnovers rose from 2.8 to 3.5.

In the 2021 season, he had a very similar dip in production as well. Julius went from 24 to 18 points a game. He also fell from 46% shooting to 29.8%. With his issues in the playoffs, how can Randle take the jump and be more reliable?

Improving Randle’s Right Hand

Randle is a great player, and he is a professional, so he must be able to drive right. Unfortunately, driving right is an obvious problem. He does not feel comfortable attacking or finishing with his weak hand. It is an issue that surfaces every postseason. In a 2021 article, an analyst wrote that Julius is not a “Number one option” because of his poor weak hand. 

So, how does Randle fix it? He needs to watch the film. The film allows Randle to practice areas where he has to drive right. 

Here are different ways to improve this: First, have him work from the mid-post. They need to force him right and not let him go to his strong hand. Additionally, the ability to work on dribble moves and have him finish over tall objects or defenders strictly with his right is crucial. Lastly, do not let him spin back to his left. Trainers need to teach Julius hesitations and backup dribbles so he feels comfortable using his right hand. 

Playing Closer to the Basket

Randle is a strong guy and gets guarded by smaller defenders in the playoffs. He needs to play closer to the basket. It eliminates help defense and allows him to get to the basket with fewer dribbles. Julius’ big problem is driving into help or over-dribbling. Therefore, he needs to embrace the post. He shot 55% from two-point range, so he succeeds in the paint. Furthermore, he uses his advantage instead of over-dribbling and taking step-backs from the perimeter. 

Randle Needs Quicker Decision Making

Now, this does not mean being quicker physically. Julius needs to make quicker decisions. When getting the ball, he needs to decide in a split second. Randle takes too long and dribbles too much to make his offensive move. Therefore, he needs to learn to shoot it right away, make a quick drive or pass it up. The best players in the NBA know how to read the defense and make their decisions quickly. If Julius Randle improves this, his performance will improve. 

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