As the Brooklyn Nets continue their search for a third superstar, the Knicks still find themselves on the hunt for one.
RJ Barrett had a desirable rookie campaign, but there is no indication he’s worthy of being called the future face of the franchise. Which is why, according to a new report by Marc Berman of the New York Post, the team may consider trading young big man Julius Randle.
Undoubtedly the Knicks are open to it. His contract for next season ($18.9 million) is manageable but the downside is he will count $4 million on the 2021 cap if they don’t exercise his team option after next season. The 2021 free-agent class is golden. Randle had his moments as a double-double force and is still early in his prime.
But Randle’s defense is below average and it’s been reported here his knack of over-dribbling frustrated some teammates, including RJ Barrett. And a bigger disappointment was Randle lost his magic from the 3-point line (27.7 percent). As David Fizdale noted recently, the Knicks could use a 3-point shooting stretch 4. Someone like, say Kristaps Porzingis.
Needless to say, the Knicks aren’t too high on Randle. After reaching a deal on a three-year, $63 million contract this past summer, the hope was that he would blossom into a quality starting big man.
While his offensive game is definitely versatile, he lacks a shooting stroke from beyond the arc and continues to be a liability defensively.
If the Knicks can trade him for a decent return, you can bet they’ll give it some consideration. He averaged 19.5 points, 9.7 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game this season.