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BEGLEY: The Knicks have ‘significant interest’ in Julius Randle

Big lefty headed to NY?

New York Knicks v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The Knicks have been linked to centers (DeMarcus Cousins) and guards (Terry Rozier) — and of course they have been linked to superstar forwards Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard — but so far they haven’t seemed to be looking to address their gaping hole at the power forward position.

Not so, says SNY’s Ian Begley. The front office has, in fact, zeroed in on a intriguing candidate in New Orleans Pelicans big man Julius Randle:

“As far as other names go: New York continues to have significant interest in Julius Randle. Execs monitoring Randle’s situation on Saturday believed that the Knicks were in strong position to land Randle. For those reading the tea leaves: one team expected to have a meeting with Randle early in free agency, but that meeting is not expected to take place, per sources. It’s unclear why the meeting won’t take place, but it’s not a huge leap to think that it’s connected to the Knicks’ strong interest in Randle.”

This would be a huge get for New York. The soon-to-be 25-year-old Randle is a rampaging beast. The Pelicans scooped him up last summer on a one-year deal and he rewarded them with an average 21.4 points, 8.7 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Though he came into the league primarily as a low-post player, Randle expanded his range out past the three-point line in 2018-19, hitting 34.4% of his triples on 2.7 attempts per game. Watch him run rampant through the Trail Blazers (and old friend Enes Kanter) for 45 points and 11 boards.

And he refuses to let Kanter forget.

A frontcourt combo of Randle and Mitchell Robinson would be potent indeed. Randle would also be an interesting role model for RJ Barrett, a fellow lefty and bully-ball enthusiast. I fully support this move. Get it done, Steve Mills and Scott Perry!