Breaking Down Julius Randle's Talents in Lead-Up to McDonald's All-American Game
One of the top high school basketball players in the country, Julius Randle will suit up in the annual McDonald's All-American Game this April, according to The Dallas Morning News' Brad Townsend.
Randle, a 6'9", 250-pound power forward for Prestonwood Christian Academy and native of Dallas, Texas, has received offers from several college basketball powerhouses, including Florida, Kansas and Kentucky, among others, according to 247Sports.com. He is expected to announce his college decision on March 20 (via Townsend).
With Randle sure to make news in the coming weeks with his decision and performance in the All-American Game, we'll take a moment here to break down some of his many basketball talents.
Explosive Leaper, Havoc-Wreaking Rebounder
At 6'9", Randle doesn't need to jump all that high to make his presence on the boards. But make no mistake about it, the Texas native can rise above the rim with the best of them.
Randle doesn't just elevate; he explodes from the floor and is capable of making multiple leaps in the paint in pursuit of a rebound. In addition to his physical gifts on the glass, Randle shows intensity on the boards, making the lost art of rebounding a priority.
The left-handed star power forward's motor extends well beyond rebounding, however, as he routinely plays hard and is determined on both ends of the court.
Powerful, Coordinated Finisher on the Interior
Randle can handle the ball well and drive to the basket in either direction, but he is arguably at his best when he's receiving the ball on the block where he can out-muscle his defender to the rim, or use his size and length to finish over the top.
In addition to possessing a quality post game, Randle can shoot the ball from anywhere on the floor, but is especially deadly when taking fadeaways around the rim.
The best part about Randle's inside game is that he doesn't shy away from it. While most bigs today are content to play around the three-point line, Randle loves to get down the floor and seal his man off on the low block, or take him there off the dribble.
His versatility extends to the perimeter as well, where he can shoot the ball and use his quickness to drive.
Solid, Passionate Defender
Julius Randle isn't going to swat shots into the crowd on every defensive trip down the floor, and he's not going to overwhelm his man on that end of the court, but he's a hard worker and a strong athlete who certainly doesn't disappoint on defense.
Randle will have to improve his speed on defense in order to become a difference-maker at the college and, perhaps, eventually the NBA level. But for now, he can more than hold his own against high school forwards.
Improvement looks to be inevitable in this area for Randle, however, as he has the motor and energy to become an intimidating lockdown defender.
The Kevin Garnett comparisons may be a bit premature in terms of skill set, but they are certainly fitting of Randle's intensity.
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