2 reasons why Julius Randle’s extension with the Knicks guarantees Obi Toppin trade
Now having signed a 4-year, $117 million extension with the New York Knicks, Julius Randle has definitely cashed in after playing All-Star caliber basketball throughout the 2020-21 NBA season. With the Knicks now fully invested in Randle long-term, this may lead to them parting ways with Obi Toppin.
Granted he’s only been with the team for one season, but with the rapid changes happening across the Knicks roster they may not have room for Toppin to properly grow and develop.
Given his high potential and All-Star ceiling, Toppin would definitely have a lot of teams showing interest in him if the Knicks do decide to put him on the trade block.
Having said all this, let’s take an in-depth look at the two reasons why Julius Randle’s extension with the Knicks guarantees an Obi Toppin trade.
Obi Toppin created a logjam for Knicks at power forward
Now that Julius Randle will be their primary option at power forward, Obi Toppin’s presence gives the Knicks some overkill at the position. Especially with Randle, Kevin Knox, and Taj Gibson taking up the majority of minutes played at the power forward spot.
As crazy as it may sound, the Knicks won’t have much use for Toppin come next season.
As a high-flying, athletic wing that can bang down low and finish strong at the rim, Toppin will have no shortage of suitors if he is ever to made available for trade by the Knicks.
With his expanding offensive game and improving defensive presence, Toppin has lots of upside to his game and teams will definitely take notice of this. However, Toppin will not find that opportunity with the Knicks as he longer fits into their future plans with Randle now being their primary power forward and franchise superstar.
Toppin has fallen out of the Knicks rotation
Another reason that Toppin could be on the trade block would be due to the fact that he’s fallen out of the Knicks rotation. His style of play does not fit into Thibodeau’s grit-and-grind, next man up system that requires his players to go all out on both ends of the floor and win basketball games in an ugly fashion. Not to say that Toppin could not excel, but given the depth and expansion New York has made to their roster this offseason, there may not be any room for Toppin to play meaningful minutes.
He would also would benefit much more from playing in an up-tempo, two-way system that opens up more opportunities for slashing or knocking down the 3-ball on a routine basis. Given his limitless athleticism and great size for the position, there’s plenty of contenders and young teams across the league that would provide him with an environment where he’d be able to continually grow and develop his game.
As good of a coach as Tom Thibodeau is with the Knicks, it doesn’t seem like he’ll be able to find a spot for Obi Toppin in his line up or be able to make the right adjustments that’ll allow him to fit into his schemes. However, Toppin could definitely find the right fit on a new team that gives him more opportunities to prove himself and would be given much more playing time as well, which would provide a genuine on-ramp for greater NBA success.