Julius Randle injury: Knicks star out for Game 1 vs. Heat with ankle sprain

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Julius Randle Knicks
New York Knicks’ Julius Randle (30) shoots against Cleveland Cavaliers’ Jarrett Allen (31) during the second half of Game 1 in a first-round NBA basketball playoffs series Saturday, April 15, 2023, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Nick Cammett)

Roughly 30 minutes before tip-off for Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal against the Miami Heat, the New York Knicks announced that they’d be without one of their top men, Julius Randle. 

The star forward aggravated a sprained left ankle originally suffered at the end of the regular season — forcing him to miss the final five games — throughout the Knicks’ first-round series against the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

Julius Randle Knicks
New York Knicks forward Julius Randle reacts after being fouled by Cleveland Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Tuesday, April 18, 2023, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

He was initially deemed a game-time decision on Sunday but was downgraded to out after he took warmups at approximately 10:30 a.m. ET where he was seen shooting and attempting to cut with the brace on that ankle. 

Obi Toppin got the nod to start in his place against the Heat, which will re-spark one of the NBA’s greatest rivalries from the late-1990s. 

Over 77 games during the regular season, Randle bounced back from a down 2021-22 campaign by averaging 25.1 points and 10.0 rebounds per game. 

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