The Lakers Summer League team hasn’t done well. They’re 1-3 thus far and lost to the Sixers SL team, 83-61, on Wednesday night. But we’re there to see how the Laker draft picks are performing.
Julius Randle has done pretty well thus far. Randle is averaging 12 points and four rebounds in three games he has played thus far. He has shown some flashes as an excellent player and has shown some versatility.
Randle was asked about him leading the break.
“It’s a part of my versatility. There are certain times you can do it. You just gotta read the defense and have a good feel for the game.”
Julius was asked about the transition to the NBA.
“I think it gets a lot easier, honestly. There’s more of a flow (in Summer League).”
When asked further about it…
“The spacing is way more because you just can’t collapse. Because if you do, somebody’s going to be wide open. What I’m seeing a lot is they’re either not collapsing, I got an open lane and they can’t guard me one-on-one or they’re collapsing and someone’s wide open and the passes are way easier. The spacing is the biggest difference from college to NBA.”
Julius was asked about his tendencies on the court.
“I like facing up first. A lot of times, guys are bigger, slower than me… not as athletic as me and I can use my athleticism and my skill set. So I like facing up whether it’s on the elbow, top of the key, block extended… that’s what I like doing. But I like grinding and being physical as well.”
He was then asked about his options when facing up.
“Honestly, it’s how the defense is playing me. If the guy wants to be physical, I’ll face him up. If it’s a smaller guy, I’m gonna take him to the post. The biggest difference from my first game and what I’m seeing now is I’m being more patient. I’m reading how the defenses are guarding me. From there, I’m able to operate and be more efficient.”
A lot of people have compared Randle’s game to Memphis power forward Zach Randolph. Randle seemed genuinely stunned and humbled by that comparison. I asked who he patterned his game after.
“Nobody. That’s very humbling, though. (Randolph) is a great player but I never compared or patterned my game after anybody.”
Randle was asked about how his experience with the Lakers fans in Summer League.
“It’s ridiculous. It’s kind of like Vegas is L.A. almost. So many people around everywhere I go whether it’s a cab or a restaurant, there’s Lakers fan and they know who you are. Obviously, you have the most fans here for the games. It’s kind of fun and ridiculous at the same time.
When asked if he was mentally prepared for the fans…
“I didn’t know it was going to be like this. Thought it was going to be JUST Summer League. I didn’t know that there were that many Laker fans out here in Vegas.”
Finally, he was asked about being drafted by the Lakers.
I know it’s the best possible place for me. I didn’t want to be anywhere else so I’m very happy that I was able to be chosen by the Lakers.”
And a lot of Laker fans are very happy that they got him with the 7th overall pick.