Knicks Julius Randle out for Game 1 vs. Miami Heat
UPDATE: The Knicks have made it official, Julius Randle is out for Game 1 vs. Miami. Obi Toppin will start in his place.
Quentin Grimes is available to play. Julius Randle (sprained left ankle) is out. Josh Hart and Obi Toppin are in the starting lineup.
— NY_KnicksPR (@NY_KnicksPR) April 30, 2023
Officially, according to Tom Thibodeau, Knicks forward Julius Rankle will be a game-time decision with his sprained ankle.
However, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports Randle is likely out (which means he’s out).
Knicks All-Star F Julius Randle (ankle sprain) is expected to be out for Game 1 vs. Miami today, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 30, 2023
This isn’t a huge surprise after Thibodeau said on Saturday that Randle had not gone through a full practice and had done some shooting, lifting, and pool cardio. He didn’t sound close to playing.
It’s a blow for the Knicks and creates an opportunity and pressure on the Heat to steal a game in Madison Square Garden when New York is not at first strength. In what looks on paper to be an even series, this is an advantage the Heat might regret squandering.
Randle struggled in the first round against the Cavaliers, averaging 14.4 points a game on 33.8% shooting (and a dreadful 45.9 true shooting percentage). To get past the Heat, the Knicks will need something closer to All-Star Randle.
Quentin Grimes is also a game-time decision for the Knicks.
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Knicks Julius Randle out for Game 1 vs. Miami Heat originally appeared on NBCSports.com