Knicks players react to Julius Randle best-case scenario injury update

The hope is that Julius Randle will be able to avoid surgery.
New York Knicks, Julius Randle
New York Knicks, Julius Randle / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

The locker room should've been buzzing after the New York Knicks beat the Heat on Saturday, but instead, the focus was on what happened with a little over four minutes left to play in the game. Even the vibe at Madison Square Garden was off.

Julius Randle was driving to the basket when Jaime Jaquez Jr. attempted to draw a charge, causing the Knicks forward to take a hard fall on his right shoulder. His teammates had to pull him up using the left side of his body, as his right shoulder was in too much pain. Randle immediately exited the court, and it was later reported he had dislocated his right shoulder.

After a Sunday full of watching football and checking X (Twitter) for Randle updates, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Monday morning that there's "optimism" that Randle will miss weeks, not months. SNY's Ian Begley added that there's hope that the forward will avoid surgery.

Knicks fans collectively sighed a breath in relief at the news. It helps that the All-Star break is looming, which will give Randle additional time to recover.

Julius Randle's teammates react to optimistic injury update

Unsurprisingly, Josh Hart threw a bit of humor into his response when the team learned about Randle's status (subscription required) at shootaround on Monday in Charlotte.

"I think it’s gonna be a collective [effort], unless between now and game time I can put on 45 pounds of mostly muscle,” Hart said. “I think it’ll just be a common collective effort. It’s not gonna be about just one person. It’s gonna be everyone is stepping up."

Josh Hart, via Newsday

There's a good chance that Hart will start at the four tonight in Randle's absence. He might not have gained 45 pounds of muscle, but he could take his Mike and Ike obsession to another level and gain 45 pounds of non-muscle.

Meanwhile, Donte DiVincenzo, who has spent a little over half a season with Randle, knows that the forward will have a heck of a comeback.

"First and foremost, you don’t want anybody to miss any time. So I wish he could be back out there, I wish he could have shot those free throws. Injuries are a part of the game. So when you hear weeks not months obviously it’s a good sign. Being here this first year, what I know about Julius is he’s going to do everything possible to cut whatever the timeline is, he’s going to try to cut that down, try to get back."

Donte DiVincenzo, via Newsday

While Randle will do everything in his power (and then some) to return to the floor, the focus should be on making sure he's as close to 100 percent as possible first. The last thing New York should want is for him to re-enter the lineup only to further injure his shoulder. It'll already be a tough adjustment as is for Randle to return.

Hopefully, while Randle recovers, he'll remain in good spirits, and the Knicks will pick up a few wins in his honor along the way.