Julius Randle had a disappointing first season with the New York Knicks as the young team struggled find leadership.
Tom Thibodeau is the Knicks third coach since the Knicks signed Randle and his hard-nosed, defensive-minded style has brought out the best in the young power forward.
Through ten games this season Randle has averaged 23.2 points, 11.8 rebounds and 7.1 assists per game. On offense he has been looking for open teammates, taking smarter shots and proving he is capable of hitting 3’s. He has shot 36.8 percent on 3-pointers this season. Defensively, he has been more active and stronger on the glass.
While the 5-5 Knicks are far from perfect, this is their best start since the 2017-18 season and they appear to have found an identity as a gritty team that rebounds and defends well. Randle has been their most consistent player so far and his play has been crucial for New York, as the team has struggled to find consistent scorers.
The Knicks are still a work in progress but Thibodeau has them moving in the right direction and Randle is leading the way.