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Julius Randle Says 'I Still Want to Be a Part' of Knicks amid Trade Rumors

Erin WalshJanuary 29, 2022

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Julius Randle's name has popped up in various trade rumors as the Feb. 10 deadline inches closer, but the New York Knicks veteran said his resolve to be a part of the franchise hasn't waned.

"I wouldn’t change it," Randle said, per Steve Popper of Newsday. "I still want to be a part of it. I still want to see this thing through. I still want to be a part of trying to bring a championship to the Knicks."

Randle's comments come after SNY's Ian Begley reported he could be available in a trade for the "right return."

The Knicks were hoping Randle would be a key part of the team's long-term future after signing him to a four-year, $117 million extension in August. However, he and the team have taken a step back this season.

The Knicks, who finished 41-31 last year, are sitting at 23-27 and in 12th in the Eastern Conference. 

The 27-year-old is averaging 18.5 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game while shooting 41.3 percent from the floor and 30.6 percent from deep. His numbers are down across the board from last season when he averaged 24.1 points, 10.2 rebounds and 6.0 assists per game while shooting 45.6 percent from the floor and 41.1 percent from deep.

In addition, Randle's defense hasn't been as good as it was one year ago. Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier have also struggled, so Randle isn't solely to blame for the team's shortcomings. 

Although his name has been mentioned in trade rumors and he's shown public frustration recently, it's unlikely the veteran gets moved ahead of the deadline. Dealing him didn't appear to be in the team's plans a few weeks ago, and it's hard to imagine the franchise will move him now. 

That said, the Knicks are also reportedly open to trading Walker, Fournier and Alec Burks, per ESPN's Brian Windhorst.

The team could look a lot different to finish out the season, for better or for worse. 

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