The Los Angeles Lakers could be interested in New York Knicks forward Julius Randle if Donovan Mitchell moves to the ‘Big Apple’, per NBA Insider Marc Stein. Stein added that the Lakers wouldn’t mind taking on the remainder of Randle’s four-year contract.
He is owed $23.7 million in 2022-23 and his salary increases each season until he becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2026. The Lakers selected Randle seventh overall in the 2014 NBA draft. He spent the first four seasons of his career in L.A.
In his last season in LA, the former Most Improved Player averaged 16.1 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 82 games while shooting 55.8 percent from the floor and 22.2 percent from deep.
“A very plugged-in person in the league told me… If Donovan Mitchell we’re to end up with the Knicks, there could be talks between the Knicks and the Lakers involving Julius [Randle].”
(via @TheSteinLine, @FredKatz, https://t.co/jkyVnziK63) pic.twitter.com/7xK0ZtlGKO
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) July 31, 2022
Following his stint with the Lakers, Randle signed a two-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, which included a player option for the 2019-20 campaign. He spent the 2018-19 season in New Orleans before opting out.
The 27-year-old went on to sign a three-year deal with the Knicks before agreeing to a four-year extension with the franchise in August 2021. He had an All-NBA 2020-21 season, but his performance dipped during the past season.
Randle’s 20.1 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game were all down from the prior season. In any case, the Knicks might look to offload Randle’s contract if they acquire Donovan Mitchell from Utah.
With RJ Barrett poised to receive a lucrative deal next season, keeping Randle could be a financially tall task for the Knicks. As of now, the NY franchise hasn’t found common ground in the negotiations with the Jazz.