Coming into Summer League, expectations were high for a Los Angeles Lakers roster that was full of players expected to make the team. Unfortunately, after a 1-4 finish, many players were disappointed and frustrated with the overall outcome, as well as with themselves.
One of the most frustrated players was second year forward Julius Randle, who admittedly struggled with the 20 minute per game restriction placed on him by the Lakers according to Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times:
It’s just frustrating, it’s been so long,” he said. “I’ve never sat out that long. To get a little taste now, I have to wait a couple of more months.”
Randle was clearly rusty in his first game action since the Lakers season opener. Even though Randle was frustrated, head coach Byron Scott knows that Randle understands the process and the reasoning behind bringing him along slowly:
He understands that it’s a bigger picture than just the summer league,” said Coach Byron Scott, who was on hand to watch his assistant Mark Madsen run the team. “This was to knock off some of the rust and get him back into playing basketball. We didn’t want to play him 35 to 40 minutes a game, and then he takes a step back.”
Randle is viewed as one of the Laker bright young stars and the team is wise to ease him back into action. With all of the health issues the team has suffered over the last couple of years, the team wants to ensure Randle is at his best when the games really matter.
While not consistent, Randle did show flashes of what he is capable of and his future remains promising. In all likelihood, there will be no restrictions placed on Randle once training camp begins and he will be free to wreak havoc on defenses across the NBA.[divide]