Lakers News: Julius Randle Finishes 5th For 2017-18 NBA Most Improved Player Award
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers forward Julius Randle finished fifth in voting for the 2017-18 NBA Most Improved Player Award. The fourth-year forward received nine second-place votes and nine third-place votes en route to 36 total points from media members.

Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo (499 points) won the award. He defeated Houston Rockets center Clint Capela (99), Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie (50) and Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond (46).

For Randle, the 2017-18 NBA season provided challenges that forced him to take the next step in his development. After transforming his body during the offseason, Randle did not receive a contract extension and was not part of the team’s starting lineup.

While the 23-year-old initially struggled with the situation, he eventually embraced his role as the team’s small-ball center, averaging 12.5 points and 6.3 rebounds in 33 games off the bench.

Nearing the midpoint of the season, Randle was inserted into the starting lineup as Los Angeles struggled with injuries and wins. Along with averaging 18.6 points and 9.1 rebounds in 49 starts, the Lakers had their best stretch, winning 12 out of 16 games to begin the new year.

Led by Randle’s improvement in Year 4, the Lakers won 35 games for the first time since the 2012-13 season, which was a nine-game improvement from last season.

Randle’s teammate, Brandon Ingram, received three total points after averaging 16.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 3.9 assists. Ingram likely would’ve garnered more votes had he not missed time due to injuries.

Kyle Kuzma finished fourth in voting for the NBA Rookie of the Year Award, which predictably went to Philadelphia 76ers forward Ben Simmons.

As part of our efforts to help you understand how we handle the personal information you share with us, and in preparation for the new European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), we’ve updated our Privacy & Cookies Policy. The updated Privacy & Cookies Policy will take effect on May 22, 2018. By using our services on or after that date, you’ll be agreeing to our updated Privacy & Cookies Policy. We recommend that you read our updated Privacy & Cookies Policy in full.

You May Also Like

Shaquille O’Neal Compares Playing With Penny Hardaway, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, And LeBron James

Shaquille O’Neal had the privilege of playing with a number of all-time greats during his own Hall of Fame 20-year NBA…

Lakers News: Media Still Has Giannis Antetokounmpo Ahead Of LeBron James For 2019-20 NBA MVP

Before the 2019-20 NBA season was suspended, one of the biggest developing stories was that of the Most Valuable Player…

Paul Pierce Details Growing Up Lakers Fan, But Being Selected By Celtics In 1998 NBA Draft

For most Los Angeles Lakers fans, Paul Pierce’s name brings a certain disdain and dislike as he was a villain who had no…

Lakers News: Rudy Gay Amazed By LeBron James’ Longevity In 17th NBA Season

Coming into the 2019-20 NBA season, there were questions as to how LeBron James would perform in his 17th season with…