NY Knicks: Which 2022 NBA player awards can they win?

Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks
Julius Randle, New York Knicks. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

NY Knicks: Another All-NBA season for Julius Randle?

Julius Randle is coming off of one of the best individual seasons by a New York Knick of all time. The 2021-22 season will be well underway by the time Randle turns 27 years-old in November, so we are witnessing what should be the early years of his prime.

If you thought the idea of a 26 year-old player making the leap Randle did last season was crazy, then you probably won’t know crazy until you see what Randle may have in store for us in his third year in The Mecca. As one of the only players to average at least 20 PPG, 10 RPG, and 5 APG, those are numbers that will realistically keep Randle in the All-NBA conversation.

The Knicks may not finish as high in the Eastern Conference seeding this year as last year, but they are expected to still be a better team. The team added Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier into the mix. There is the anticipated improvement from RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, and Obi Toppin. The team will once again have a solid core of veteran leadership after retaining Derrick Rose, Alec Burks, Nerlens Noel, and Taj Gibson in free agency.  And I would be remiss not to mention the rookies from the 2021 NBA Draft.

This team is well-rounded at every position and is therefore very deep. Randle thrived on a team that at times relied desperately on him to be the glue that held it all together. This season, Randle should be able to continue playing at an elite level since he will have more help, specifically on the offensive side of the ball.

I am predicting a humble All-NBA Third Team selection for JR. It won’t be the end of the world if Randle doesn’t once again make the Second Team. Even if he isn’t selected as an All-NBA player at all, it likely won’t be because he wasn’t deserving of it. The talent at the top of the NBA is extremely diverse. It’s more than possible that even if Randle improves or stays the same, other players can have better seasons and or finish higher in the standings and be selected over him.

For example, Kevin Durant didn’t make any of the three All-NBA teams due to games played. Had he played more, he certainly would have been ahead of Randle for All-NBA, pushing Randle to the Third Team. Jimmy Butler was in a similar situation last year and made Third Team. Other forwards like Anthony Davis and Jayson Tatum could easily see themselves selected over Randle next year.

There are many reasons why Randle may and may not make All-NBA again as soon as next season, but there is relief in having confidence that he will continue to be that level of player.