Skip to content

Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.

Julius Randle’s Contract Has Some Lofty Incentives

(Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

(Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

The New York Knicks biggest signing of this past summer was the addition of former Kentucky forward, Julius Randle, who they brought on board for at least two-years worth nearly $20 million per season. The bonuses involved could make Randle even richer, but he has to exceed some lofty expectations.

According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, Randle is eligible to receive an extra $900,000 per benchmark if he can hit one/or all of these:

  • Being named to either the first or second All-NBA Defensive Team.
  • Being named to the All-Star team.
  • Making the playoffs while playing in at least 65 games.

Breaking down these incentives, it doesn’t seem likely that Randle will be able to hit any of them, but that doesn’t mean he won’t try.

Randle has never been known as a premier defender in the league and his value has largely been placed in his ability to power through his opponents. He isn’t a bad defender by any means but is hardly steady enough on that end to warrant a potential defensive team selection.

Outside of his rookie season – where he broke his leg during the very first game – Randle has appeared in at least 74 games per season throughout his five-year career in Los Angeles and New Orleans. If he can stay healthy like he has been, meeting that number shouldn’t be difficult at all. Making the playoffs, on the other hand, will be damn near impossible for this squad no matter how great Randle plays.

The likeliest possibility for Randle to cash in on nearly an extra million dollars will be making the All-Star team, which is actually quite possible, in my opinion.

As a member of the Pelicans last season, Randle averaged 21.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game while shooting over 52 percent from the field. He expanded his game a bit by adding an outside shot (34.4 percent on 2.7 three-point attempts in 2018-19) and was the best player outside of Jrue Holiday when Anthony Davis was going through that whole trade debacle.

While making an All-Star team sounds like it will be a tough challenge – and it will be – Randle has a perfect opportunity to do so in New York. He’ll enter the new season as the Knicks best and most established player on a team that is widely expected to quickly descend to the bottom of the Eastern Conference. While the power dynamics in the NBA has shifted a bit, the Western Conference still controls a majority of the league’s top talent. You could make an argument that Randle would have earned an All-Star spot last season had he been in the East. Players such as Kyle Lowry and D’Angelo Russell had great seasons, but so did Randle – everything he did was simply overshadowed when it came to the national media. Kevin Durant – now a member of the Brooklyn Nets in the East – will miss all of next season, too. Randle will have more than a shot to make it happen.

Randle might not be the Knicks centerpieces moving forward (that is being reserved by rookie RJ Barrett and former Kentucky forward Kevin Knox), but he’ll surely be the team’s best player, especially early in the season. He has the potential to bust out for another career year and this time he’ll actually be covered like a top talent. Making the All-Star team is still an optimistic goal for the 24-year old, however not one too far out of reach. Even when the Knicks are bad, people still talk about them. Barrett is going to draw the viewers, Randle will surprise them. Expect a big year from the BBN-loving big man.

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA and UK Hoops. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR

2 Comments for Julius Randle’s Contract Has Some Lofty Incentives

  1. JASUN74
    10:07 pm September 20, 2019 Permalink

    I am excited about Randal being in New York for the next couple of years. He’s 100% earned everything he’s ever got and he’ll be a great player for a team and City that has been through enough of a drought the last twenty years. Hehe. I can see him making the East All Star team, and with some growth from Knox and Mitchell, some team play from RJ Barrett, lol, they have a slim chance at the 8 playoff spot. Now, if Knox and Mitchell play like they’re capable of they could be a surprise in the East.

    J.Randal is a great rebounder and is a better defensive player that a lot of people give him credit for, he’ll play hard on every play and always give you 100%. It’s going to be very hard to make the playoffs this year, but with a down Eastern Conference, it is possible, even more next year. Anyway, I wish him and his family the very best, and he’s been a great representative of our beloved Wildcats!! Good luck my brother, you keep improving every year, and try not to let the Media there in New York City get to you. I believe in you and I know the Big Blue Nation has and will always have your back!

  2. CatsNationBBN
    12:38 am September 21, 2019 Permalink

    randle is one of the most slept on guys in the league. majorly underrated