Julius Randle injury: Knicks star to miss at least 2 weeks with left ankle sprain

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Julius Randle injury Knicks
New York Knicks forward Julius Randle gestures after dunking on the Washington Wizards in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, Feb. 24, 2023, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

New York Knicks star forward Julius Randle will miss at least two weeks due to a left ankle sprain, as first reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic on Thursday. 

The 28-year-old suffered the injury during the second quarter of Wednesday’s win over the Miami Heat. He would not return. 

From a Knicks perspective, the timing of this injury couldn’t be much worse. With just five games remaining in the regular season, they hold the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference — though their standing appears cemented. 

The Knicks trail the Cleveland Cavaliers for the No. 4 seed by four games and lead the No. 6 Nets by 2.5.

Julius Randle Knicks
New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) celebrates after scoring during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat, Friday, March 3, 2023, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

Should Randle adhere to the minimal timetable of two weeks, that means a return just two days before the start of the first round of the playoffs. So there is a very real chance that he’ll miss a portion of the playoffs.

The Kentucky product has had an imperative bounce-back season following a down 2021-22 campaign. Appearing in the team’s first 77 games, he’s averaging a career-high 25.1 points to go with 10 rebounds per game.

Replacing him will be tough since Randle’s season has been historic. He’s the first player in NBA history to put up 1,750+ points, 750+ Rebounds, 300+ Assists, and 215+ 3-Pointers in a single season. You can’t find that on a team’s bench. 

In his absence, Obi Toppin should see a bump in playing time as the Knicks look to hold things down for the final stretch.

For more on Julius Randle and the Knicks, visit AMNY.com