Knicks’ Julius Randle opens up about his future with big decisions looming

New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) high fives guard Josh Hart (3) in front of Brooklyn Nets forward Mikal Bridges (1) during the fourth quarter at Barclays Center
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

New York Knicks F Julius Randle visited the Empire State Building on Friday. The 3-time All-Star was asked about his future in New York amid contract extension rumors. Randle is eligible to sign a four-year/$182 million extension this summer.

Randle expresses the desire to stay in New York long-term

“I’ve always said from the very beginning I would love to be here in New York and I would love to continue to add on to what the guys did in the playoffs,” Randle told The New York Post’s Stefan Bondy. “I feel like that was my personal — biggest personal goal, or I’d say team goal in a sense, was when I got here is to be able to build and compete and to be at the point where we’re at now, where it’s an actual possibility [to win a championship].”

Randle first signed with the Knicks in 2019 as a free agent. In his first season with the team, the Knicks finished 21-45 (season shortened by COVID-19 Pandemic). Five years later, the Knicks are potential NBA title contenders thanks in large part to Randle’s efforts.

Jan 15, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks forward OG Anunoby (8) celebrates with forward Julius Randle (30) after a basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 15, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks forward OG Anunoby (8) celebrates with forward Julius Randle (30) after a basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Knicks All-Star PF could hit free agency after next season

If Randle and the Knicks are unable to reach an agreement, the All-Star forward can hit free agency as soon as 2025, where he may be eligible to receive up to $300 million.

Randle missed 36 games and the entire playoffs, thanks to a dislocated shoulder on January 27th. Randle attempted to rehab his shoulder enough to return to action this past season, but ultimately, his injury required surgery, ending his season and delivering a massive blow to the Knicks’ title chances.

“So really, that’s what my focus is, doing whatever I can to make sure I get healthy and get back and make sure I’m ready whenever we start playing again and contribute to winning,” said Randle. “That’s really all my focus is and that stuff always in my career has taken care of itself.”

Randle part of Knicks’ long offseason to-do list

Randle’s contract situation is part of the Knicks’ long to-do list this offseason. In addition to Randle, Jalen Brunson is also eligible for a contract extension (four-year/$156 million). OG Anunoby and Isaiah Hartenstein, two of New York’s most important pieces this past season, are both free agents. Nevertheless, the success the Knicks experienced this past season, even without him, has Randle excited about what’s next to come.

“Obviously because as a competitor you want to be out there. But I’m so proud of the guys, man,” said Randle. “All those guys stepping up and filling in a bigger role and playing the way that they did was absolutely amazing. I’m excited just to be able to help whenever I can get back.”

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