Julius Randle used the phrase “easier for me” earlier this week when discussing what Add point guard Galen Bronson It will mean a healthy return to veteran goalkeeper Derek Rose for him this season.
Knicks coach Tom Tebodeau also believes having these two players in his rotation will reduce the ball-handling burden on Randle, who has led the team in assists – but also turnovers – in each of the past two seasons.
Tibodo said of Randle, who averaged 5.1 assists and 3.4 turnovers per game last season. When he got the ball [last year]I think he got a lot more attention, especially coming out the year he was [in 2020-21]. The teams were locked into it pretty well.”
Randle earned the all-star nod for the first time and was crowned the NBA Most Improved Player with the 2020-21 season in which he led the Knicks to a record 41-31 and his first playoff game since 2013.
Elfrid Payton was the primary starting point guard that season, but the offense passed largely through Randle, who finished his career best with 24.1 points and 6.0 assists per game.
Veterans Kemba Walker have been used since their departure and the heavily tethered Alec Berks have been used in the role of goalkeeper last season. Rose has only appeared in 26 games, none of which have appeared after undergoing ankle surgeries in December and February. Randle struggled with sluggishness for a year, competing with officials, the media and fans as his numbers plummeted and the Knicks finished in the playoffs at 37-45.
“We want [Randle] To score a lot of different ways, so not just with the ball, but moving without the ball, running on the ground, cutting, that kind of thing,” Tibodo said. “I think that’s one of his strengths, his speed and his sportsmanship.
“If we can put him in those positions, I think we can have some easy baskets where he doesn’t have to work as hard as he did last year. I know with Galen and Derek that helps a lot.”
Rose is expected to make up the Knicks’ second team, along with Emmanuel Quikley. Thibodeau envisions the “quick play” combo on the console also featuring third-year striker Obi Tobin, who will open the season once again as Randle’s reserve in Power forward. Thibodeau has already played down the possibility of Randle and Toppin playing together this season.
“There are different sides to your team. You want your team to play according to its strengths and cover up its weaknesses, so they have to work together and create the shots. Your main scorers are responsible for making plays for the team,” Tibodou said. [Brunson] Do I think he can control and manage the attack really well. I think this has been one of his strong suits throughout his career, whether it’s high school, college or the pros.
“He can play with the ball and off the ball and Derek can do the same. I think that would be of great benefit. Hopefully Derek will be healthy throughout the season.”
Rose, a former NBA Most Valuable Player, is entering his 15th season in the NBA and has struggled with injuries for most of his career. Bronson, whose father Rick was added to Tibodo’s coaching staff this summer, secured a four-year, $104 million contract via free agency after a solid end to last season, including reaching the Western Conference Finals, with the Mavericks.
“It’s great. Clearly these guys are going to help us get started,” Randall said earlier this week. “They are our primary keepers. They get us into everything. They are such a huge voice on the court, so I’m really excited to have these guys on the Knicks.
“me and [Rose] I had great chemistry last year and even more so the year before, so I’m always excited to put on the suit and get on the field and play with him. He is a special and special talent. And obviously we know what Galen brings to the game and what he will bring to our team. …just getting to know each other and things like that, it was great.”