Julius Randle
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that Knicks star Julius Randle recently had arthroscopic surgery on his ankle. Randle sprained the ankle twice late last season and should be ready for training camp.

Randle first injured himself in a March, and then again in the first round of the playoffs. Injured or not, he vanished in the second round against Miami and otherwise has a history of not giving a full effort in games. Of course, the New York fans haven’t been shy about wanting him gone.

That said, it’s hard to figure if Julius Randle will be a Knick next season. Scott Perry, the general manger who signed him, is gone and his successor might not be as enamored. Randle also just averaged a career-high 25.1 points per game along with ten rebounds. New York also has no first-round picks in the upcoming NBA Draft, and Randle’s value will never be higher than it is now.

Thus, the Knicks have come to yet another fork in the road. Do they keep Julius Randle or move on from him? How much of his playoff struggles were actually because of the ankle? Even if it really was affecting him, it doesn’t excuse his absolute nonchalance in the series.

And unfortunately for New York, this makes Randle tougher to trade before the draft. Teams won’t care that he’ll make a full recovery and be able to play if there’s a single shred of doubt about his health. Basketball is a game of numbers and it’s not about how someone plays, but how many games and how much they produce.

Lucky for the Knicks, Randle is still a good enough fit in the offense that it’s not the end of the world if he isn’t traded. Let’s just hope he learns from this past season and puts in a more serious effort from start to finish.

Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.