Right now, a first-round matchup between the New York Knicks and the Atlanta Hawks is looking like a distinct possibility. Knicks All-Star forward Julius Randle is well aware of the same, and he has sent out a bit of a warning shot for Trae Young and Co. ahead of what could be one of the most intriguing first-round matchups in the playoffs.
Randle appears to be looking forward to the prospect of facing the Hawks in the opening round as he reminded everyone about how the Knicks swept Atlanta in the regular season:
“That’d be nice. It’d be nice. They’re a team we’ve beaten every time this year,” Randle said on Victory the Podcast, via Stefan Bondy of the Daily News. “But they’re also a team that’s really good, so you can’t take them for granted.”
Savage from Randle here. To be fair, he absolutely earned the right to talk smack considering how he dominated the Hawks in three games this season. The 6-foot-8 power forward averaged 37.3 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 6.7 assists in their three wins over Atlanta while also shooting 58 percent from the field. Needless to say, Randle enjoys going up against the Hawks, and he seems to believe that it’s a favorable matchup for New York.
Following Thursday’s 102-98 win over the San Antonio Spurs, the Knicks are tied with the Miami Heat for the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference. Atlanta is just half a game ahead of them as the fourth seed.