News Report: Why Julius Randle’s Return is Key for the Knicks’ Postseason Success…

The Knicks have gone 15-11 since Julius Randle has been out with a shoulder injury and his return will be crucial for NY’s success in the postseason.

Randle separated his shoulder against Miami when Jaime Jaquez Jr. attempted a charge and Randle fell over him.

The latest from Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau suggests Randle’s rehab has stalled somewhat.

Thibodeau said Randle is “feeling better” and “ramped it up some”, but still hasn’t been cleared for contact.

His presence on the court will be very much needed when New York take on the top teams in the playoffs.

Obviously Jalen Brunson is balling out this season. But when he is unavailable on offense, Randle is the only other teammate of his that can serve as the main playmaker.

“When offense breaks down in the postseason, you need a player who can put his head down and get to the rim for either a bucket or a trip to the three throw line. After parting ways with RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley, that leaves Brunson and Randle as the only two Knicks who fit the bill,” CBS’ Colin Ward-Henninger points out.

Randle is also one of the few players in this year’s squad who can score big points in crucial games.

Since Randle’s injury on January 27, the Knicks have averaged 118 points per 100 possessions with Brunson on the court.

That plummets to 102.3 when Brunson is resting.

“You just deal with your reality. So when guys do come back, you see where they are,” Thibodeau said on March 25 when asked about Randle’s return. “We’re always going to prioritize the team. So whatever contributions they can make to help the team, that’s where we’ll go.

And if it doesn’t help the team then we’re not going to do it.”

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