Julius Randle reported trade value belief spells bad news for Knicks fans

Mar 27, 2023; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 27, 2023; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports /

The Julius Randle believers in the New York Knicks fanbase took a hit when the power forward struggled in the playoffs for the second time in three seasons. A couple of nagging ankle injuries hindered his performance, which was confirmed by the surgery that Randle underwent in early June. However, even rational fans have wondered whether or not this should be the offseason where the Knicks move on from Randle.

He’s expected to be ready to go by the start of training camp, so his recovery shouldn’t extend into the 2023-24 season. Randle’s coming off yet another All-NBA/All-Star season, just like 2020-21. If New York were to make him available via trade, there would be interested suitors. However, the Knicks might not be able to get what they’d want in return.

Based on what a GM reportedly told Heavy’s Sean Deveney, a Julius Randle deal would be difficult because of his “underwhelming” trade value.

Julius Randle’s trade value reportedly low following Knicks’ 2022-23 season

Here’s a reminder that it’s still a stretch to say that the organization is going to trade Julius Randle this offseason, regardless of how much fans want to see it happen. Not only did he help New York climb its way back to relevancy, but Tom Thibodeau extends him a longer leash than other players. The Knicks hold Randle in high regard, which makes sense. Then again, though, Jalen Brunson solidified himself as the player that New York needs to build around.

The unnamed executive doesn’t think that the Knicks even have a shot to trade Randle this offseason:

"“They are not in position to trade Randle because there’s no way to get value for him,” the executive said. “They have found a way to get him to be really productive with what they do. But that does not really translate to a lot of other teams. So that is always going to work against them if they were to move him. But they have not had those conversations in a long time, and he has three years left on the contract (the third year is a player option) so it is something where he is not going anywhere for a while.”"

It would be unfair to heavily critique Randle for his 2023 postseason given the fact that he sprained his left ankle late in the regular season and then did the same against the Cavaliers in the first round. If it weren’t for the playoffs, he likely would’ve missed more than one game. However, his effort and attitude are what especially frustrated fans. That’s unfortunately been a recurring theme since he signed with the Knicks as a free agent in 2019.

New York is closer to being a contender than it has been in recent seasons, leading many to expect the front office to finally land the star player that they’ve been stockpiling assets for. What that might mean for Randle is unknown, especially if it’s true that the front office hasn’t had conversations about trading him in a while.

The offseason is just beginning, but based on what’s been reported, the idea of a Julius Randle trade has grown slimmer. Keep in mind, there’s a lot that can happen between now and the start of the 2023-24 season.