As part of the absorption of a new role as option no. 1, Randle has opted for far more field goals outside the isolation games. As a result, his field goals achieved with assists have declined year over year, correlating with a greater decline in efficiency. Randle actually shot below the league average from almost anywhere over 8 feet from the basket. As part of Randle’s touch reduction, it’s vital to help him score assists, as this will increase his% FG and improve the team’s overall attack.
During the 2018-19 season, 53.9% of Randle’s field goals were from assists. That number dropped to 47.7% last season. There is no starker difference in his shooting profile than shots made within 8 feet of the basket. During the 2018-19 season, Randle shot 60.5% from less than 8 feet from the basket while 49.9% of the goals scored were assisted. This year, Randle only shot 55.4% from less than 8 feet from the basket, while 42.5% of the field goals he scored were assisted. This is further exacerbated as Randle has redistributed around 14% of his total shots year-over-year from paint to mid-range. He ran a little better year on year from the mid-range, but at the cost of scoring more points without assistance.
His three-point field goal percentage increased from 34.4% to 27.5%. While he made over 93.7% of his three assists, he couldn’t find the touch. However, simplifying its offensive arsenal around the paint will have a domino effect on the perimeter.
A simple solution is to have more pick-and-roll opportunities. Randle had the greatest synergy with Elfrid Payton, obviously aided by playing alongside the Pelicans during the 2018-19 season. Payton assisted on 82 field goals made for Randle. Randle’s screen setup is much more effective than having him dribble for 5 seconds before making a contested shot.
If Randle spends less energy making baskets, he will score more field goals and Knick’s players will be the beneficiaries of his increased efficiency.