Knicks vs Cavs game 1 injury report: Will Julius Randle play?
The Knicks have done well to be where they are, but a lot of the reason why is down to their recovering talisman, who isn’t a guarantee for their postseason opener.
On Saturday night, the New York Knicks will take on the Cleveland Cavaliers in Ohio in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series. Their chances against the Cavs will depend heavily on their star forward, but he’s not 100% healthy at the moment.
Knicks list Julius Randle as ‘questionable’
According to reports, Knicks All-Star forward Julius Randle has been listed as questionable, ahead of the team’s opening playoff game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday. Randle has been out of the lineup since March and has been in a race against time to be ready for New York’s postseason run. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski had the latest updates on Friday night:
“Knicks All-Star forward Julius Randle (left ankle sprain) is targeting a return vs. the Cavaliers on Saturday. Randle has been steadily improving and plans to test his left ankle prior to gametime before making a final decision on rejoining lineup for Game 1.” Wojnarowski followed up his first post on twitter with the following: “Prior to this ankle sprain on March 29, Randle hadn’t missed a game this season has typically shown a willingness to play at less than 100 percent. He’s averaging 25 points, 10 rebounds and four assists.” Aside from Randle, the Knicks injury report sees only Isaiah Roby ruled out.
Julius Randle has got game
A Kentucky product and outright star, Randle has essentially been the Knicks’ best player in recent years. In 2021, it was he who spearheaded the Knicks first postseason appearance - as the fourth seed no less - since 2013. While it’s true that the Knicks failed to make the playoffs last season, they and Randle responded by finishing an impressive fifth on a record of 47-35. Having played for both the Lakers and the Pelicans, Randle is now in his ninth season in the league, and it goes without saying that he’ll be looking to put a stamp on the ball that both he and the Knicks have been playing.
The Cavs are healthy but they’ve got to be careful
In their first playoff appearance since 2018, the Cavs come into the series as the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference with a record of 51-31. With the addition of All-Star guard, Donovan Mitchell, the Cavs have gone from a talented team, to one that could potentially rock the boat in these playoffs. On the injury front, Dylan Windler has been ruled out and Isaac Okoro has been listed as questionable, meaning Cleveland has all of its most dangerous weapons available. This is going to be a good one.