Julius Randle had a phenomenal 2020-21 season, winning the Most Improved Player award after transforming his entire playstyle and becoming an elite point forward under the guidance of coach Tom Thibodeau. He also played a key role in the New York Knicks breaking their playoff drought, and that's certainly a welcome development for a franchise that was often bashed for their ineptitude.
Randle's spectacular year landed him in the company of another former great in Larry Bird. Reddit user u/Mikeo7894 has recently pointed out that Julius Randle and Larry Bird are the only two players that have managed to average 20+ PPG, 10+ RPG, and 5+ APG in a season, while also shooting 40% from beyond the arc.
We know that Randle did it last season, but Larry Bird did it during the 1984-85 season, one of the years in which he won an MVP award. While this statistic is obviously very specific, it does show that Julius Randle and Larry Bird both have very versatile playstyles. Obviously, no one is going to claim that Randle and Bird are equals as players, but it's certainly good for Randle to be in the company of an all-time great of the sport.
Randle himself wasn't a leading MVP candidate last season with the New York Knicks, though some people believed that he deserved to be in the conversation. Despite his great season, he still has doubters, with some calling his improvement over the course of the season a fluke. Hopefully, Randle is able to have another great season, quieting all the noise.
We'll see if the New York Knicks are able to have a better regular season next year, and the Eastern Conference is very crowded, with many teams being able to be competitive on paper. Hopefully, we see Julius Randle lead the New York Knicks to the playoffs again, and with their new additions, there's a solid chance of that happening.