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Julius Randle believes a team might have planted the story about him needing foot surgery

Jun 18, 2014, 9:14 PM EDT

Julius Randle Julius Randle

The NBA Draft is a dirty game of sorts, in that teams will put out whatever misinformation they can in hopes of protecting their own interests.

Julius Randle, who is expected to be selected with one of the top 10 picks, believes he was victimized by exactly this kind of gamesmanship.

Reports emerged that Randle would require foot surgery that would keep him sidelined until training camp — nothing too serious, but a potential red flag nonetheless. Randle publicly went after these reports, declaring them as patently false, and has reiterated this stance on multiple occasions since.

If in fact Randle won’t need surgery, then his assertion that teams put this out there simply to help themselves in the upcoming draft would seem to make some sense.

From Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles:

“I met with the best foot doctor in the country and he said he wouldn’t do anything with my foot, so there’s no scheduled surgery or anything,” said Randle, adding that he would be ready to play in the summer league in July. “I feel healthy, athletic. I’m moving great. No problems recovering and I’m ready to go.”

Randle said he thought a team might have planted the story.

“I think a lot of it is coming from maybe some teams (whose) motive is maybe for me to fall in the draft to them, or certain teams may want me,” said Randle.

Randle is a solid prospect whose draft stock wouldn’t be all that affected if in fact the reported surgery would end up being required, but others in the first round appear to have more long-term upside, which somewhat pegs Randle to a position somewhere in the 7-10 range.

He’s seemed extremely confident in his health throughout this process, which may mean that he’s accurate in assuming that a team put out the information in hopes he’d fall a few more spots.

  1. antistratfordian - Jun 18, 2014 at 9:22 PM

    That’s a Jerry Krause move.

  2. senorpapino - Jun 18, 2014 at 9:43 PM

    Whether or not the story is true, its surprising more NBA teams don’t do it given the NFL is rampant with smokescreens pre-draft.

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 18, 2014 at 10:09 PM

      So because something is done in another industry, it should be done in a different one?

      I’d dislike it a lot if I were a player and a team FALSELY said I needed surgery and it caused me to slip in the draft because they WANTED me.

      Blake Bortles, selected #3 in the NFL draft signed a deal worth $20.6 million.

      Johnny Football, selected #22 signed a deal worth $8.2 million.

      I’m NOT saying either had stories said about them, just an example of the millions that may be lost, real harm to a player, by a team LYING and FALSELY putting out a bad story just to get the kid to drop in the draft so they may select them.

      Even if a player loses $3 million, or $5 million, it isn’t right.

      • thatsjustchipper - Jun 19, 2014 at 7:11 AM

        Eh. If a team doesn’t trust its own medical staff enough that they have to start evaluating guys based on rumors and hearsay, maybe that team should find new management.

  3. yesser12 - Jun 18, 2014 at 9:58 PM

    He looks 27 in that picture.

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 18, 2014 at 10:05 PM

      nah, gonna be nice about Kentucky…

      let your imagination run wild…

  4. stadix093 - Jun 18, 2014 at 10:25 PM

    Why is there only one (very bad) picture of Randle on this site?

  5. birdzflyinhigh - Jun 18, 2014 at 10:57 PM

    The Sixers put it out there. He had just worked out for them prior to this story and they are hoping he slips to them at 10.

    • sumkat - Jun 19, 2014 at 12:12 AM

      If they get him at 10, I’ll buy whoever planted the story a beer

  6. bigwii - Jun 18, 2014 at 11:59 PM

    Wouldn’t be surprised the draft is a game in its self, teams use the media to their advantage all the time.

  7. floreskins - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:00 AM


  8. mungman69 - Jun 19, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    Sorry Sumkat, he will still go in the top 7. But we can hope.

  9. kavika6 - Jun 20, 2014 at 2:19 AM


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