When the New York Knicks entered the preseason, there was a serious debate that eighth overall pick Obi Toppin could cut into Julius Randleâ€™s minutes, but that question has since been answered. Toppin has suffered a calf strain that could keep him out for quite some time, and in his absence, Randle is completely dominating.
However, the Randle and Toppin tandem is set to be an exciting one. Playing him simultaneously wouldâ€™ve been and will be an interesting mesh, and Randle was actually excited about the addition of Obi.
â€œHe can shoot it and run the floor. So I think weâ€™ll be able to complement each other well,â€Â Randle said.
The New York Knicks are seeing some of their players buy-in:
Through three regular-season games, Toppin is averaging nine points, considering he only played in the initial loss to the Indiana Pacers. He heaved up seven three-point attempts, completely shattering his average from his time at Dayton.
Randle, on the other hand, is averaging 35.7 minutes per game and 23.7 points. Heâ€™s also averaging 10 rebounds, which would indicate a double-double per game.
The Knicks surprisingly pummeled the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday evening, scoring 130 points as Randle posted 29 and 14 total rebounds. He also accumulated seven assists, showing his desire to move the ball and provide for his teammates.
In 2019, Randall was more of a ball-hog and didnâ€™t offer the same passing efficiency, but heâ€™s looking to stretch the floor now and buy into Tom Thibodeauâ€™s system.
With Toppin set to miss at least two more weeks with a calf strain, we should see a lot more of Randle in the coming days, which is a great thing.
Thibodeau stated regarding Obiâ€™s injury:
â€œWhen you miss that type of time, with that type of injury, thereâ€™s going to be a period of time for him to get back to speed in terms of playing,â€™â€™ Thibodeau said. â€œAnd so obviously with a calf, you canâ€™t run or jump, so the conditioning component will factor into that.â€™â€™