NBA Rumors: Could Julius Randle be the next difference-maker to find his way to the trade block?
After an offseason that was dominated by the Damian Lillard trade saga, the 2023-24 NBA season is finally here. NBA Training Camps are in full swing, pre-season basketball is underway, and the official start of the regular season is just a couple of weeks away. However, there’s already some speculation as to who the next slate of difference-makers could be that end up finding themselves on the trade block.
Even with the James Harden situation unresolved, the expectation is that he’ll be traded soon. Without a clear-cut candidate, it’s easy to get lost in the speculation. Interestingly, according to Yahoo Sports NBA insider Jake Fischer, there’s a growing belief around the league that one name to keep an eye on as the possible next “trade situation” is New York Knicks forward Julius Randle.
Randle recently switched agencies and there are some that believe that move could be tied to a possible future trade.
The Knicks are heading into the season with momentum after last year’s playoff run, but there’s no question that this team needs to make a star upgrade if they want to compete with the likes of the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics. And if they were to explore a star upgrade, you’d have to imagine that Randle would likely have to be involved to a certain extent.
Why a Julius Randle trade could be on the horizon
Randle has had an up-and-down experience with the Knicks and his name has popped up on the trade block several times. For now, though, it seems like he’s not being shopped. He had another bounce-back year for the Knicks last season and struggled in the postseason largely due to nagging injuries.
All in all, last season was a much-needed success for Randle in New York.
However, things could change quickly if the Knicks want to make a splash move for a star. That’s where Randle’s contract could be beneficial. With two years (at most) left on his contract after this season, it wouldn’t be surprising for the Knicks to at least explore his trade market. He’s unlikely to re-sign in New York beyond this contract, especially if the Knicks have their sights set on adding a superstar player, and there’s a fair chance he ends up opting out of the final year of his contract after next season.
This is around the time that the Knicks should be preparing to make a decision on his future; in other words, it’s no surprise Randle decided to change agencies now.
Both sides, in a way, need to make decisions about their futures. The question remains whether both sides will end up being on the same page.