The Drew League in Los Angeles is one of the best pro-am summer leagues anywhere. Current and former pros — mostly LA natives, but also other players from around the league — show up often and play with/against some really talented players who aren’t NBA players, but can really ball. Every year, then, getting out to the Drew to watch some quality hoops is a staple of LA based basketball fans.
One name who’s shown up the last couple of years is the Lakers own Julius Randle. The Lakers starting PF was there this past weekend and put on quite a show in helping his team (with fellow NBA’ers DeMar DeRozan and Nick Young) pull out the win.
— Drew League (@DrewLeague) July 25, 2017
Ooh, boy. Just watching that gets me excited.
Now, for some additional context. Randle didn’t have the best game early on, he got dunked on by a big man who powered over the top of him in the paint. That same player crossed him up then hit him with a spin move to almost dunk on him again (Randle fouled him). There was another play where Randle missed a dunk when he tried to yam it down with a bit too much force. So, these highlights don’t show his entire game and if all you saw was the clips above you might think Randle just dominated the entire game.
That wasn’t the case. You can watch a more full package of clips here, if you want to see what I mean.
It’s also not really the point of this post anyway. If anything, Randle getting “woken up” by a player taking it to him and then responding is kinda what I like to hear. It shows a certain competitiveness that anyone should want in a player. It also, in my eyes, makes his performance later in the game even more impressive to me. Randle was huge down the stretch defensively, getting a couple of blocks and then creating offense for his team in the open court. It was his play (along with some shotmaking from Young and DeRozan) which got his team the win.
In any event, it’s just good to see Randle in real game action. After a summer league which saw us get a glimpse of Brandon Ingram’s improvement, Kyle Kuzma play really well, and Lonzo Ball show how special he can be, getting some clips of Randle — as the other young guy who I remain really high on — is good fun. And I’m going to savor it. Especially since we’re not going to see much basketball for the next couple of months anyway.