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Tom Thibodeau must limit Julius Randle’s ball management duties

Under coach Miller, Julius Randle has achieved some success after shifting directing duties to his point guards. Of course, this is related to Elfrid Payton’s return from injury, but it should remain an emphasis even under a new regimen of coach and point guard. Coach Thibs should continue to limit Randle’s duties and touches on the ball, even if it means reducing the number of assist opportunities.

Randle has had a penchant for turnovers since joining the NBA. As Chip Murphy wrote for Elite Sports NY, Randle was the only NBA player with more than 200 turnovers and less than 230 assists during the 2018-19 season with the Pelicans. As of the 2014-15 season, he is one of only 4 players with more than 900 turnovers and less than 1,100 assists.

Randle averaged 3.0 turnovers / game on just 3.1 assists / game while playing 32.5 minutes / game. Randle finished the season 21st in the league in turnovers / game, and only Andre Drummond and Joel Embiid averaged fewer assists / game than he. In other words, for a non-point guard, Randle is flipping the ball too many times.

Randle holds the ball too long. Unsurprisingly, teammates were often frustrated by this bad habit, as reported in April by NY Post’s Marc Berman.

One drastic measure to reduce turnovers, and ultimately reduce touches, is to eliminate the spin move from his repertoire. For Randle, this move is as drastic as moving from a red meat diet to a vegan diet.

Simply put, these spin moves often result in bad turnovers or really bad shots. Randle shouldn’t hold the ball that long and has to be much quicker at making decisions once he’s given the ball.

Getting the ball out of Randle’s hands allows him to focus on his strengths, which include scoring in the paint and quick assists in the post. Turning him into a point guard will result in more plays as in the example in the video above.