Julius Randle With Hops Seems Like A Good Thing For Zion Williamson to Be

Kyle Koster
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Enes Kanter is not afraid of anything and has stared down some pretty substantial real-world threats. So it’s not entirely surprising he’d get all loose and conversational on Colin Cowherd’s show this afternoon, even when the chat turned to a recent third-rail location: suggesting No. 1 pick Zion Williamson is going to be anything less than an otherworldly NBA player.

The Portland Trail Blazers big man told Cowherd that he believes Williamson is “overhyped” and is essentially Julius Randle with hops.

This was ostensibly meant to be a bit of a zinger but the truth of the matter is that Randle is a fine player. He just had the best year of his relatively new NBA career, putting up 21.4 points and 8.7 rebounds. The Pelicans lefty also dramatically improved his three-point shooting (34.4 percent).

Randle himself took it a slight and responded, though I am 25 percent certain by doing so he is submarining his own point that he’s a fine player.

It’s also worth pointing out that Randle had the same vertical leap at the NBA combine as Blake Griffin (35.5 inches), so it’s not as though he’s some land-bound cement truck. The body type and playing styles are clearly the same, then there’s the fact that both are left-handed.

Is it crazy to suggest Williamson-Randle is a fair comparison?

Obviously bigger things are expected from the No. 1 overall pick. And he has the potential to become better in all facets of the game than Randle is currently. Hell, he could be a Hall of Famer who revolutionizes the game in an unforeseen way. That’s why hype is so high.

All that said, I bet we can meet back here in a year and see that Williamson and Randle had similar years with the former being well on his way to eclipsing anything the latter has, or ever will, do.

Maybe Kanter isn’t the one to make this point about being overhyped. But me, a guy averaging 0.0 and 0.0., could be just the messenger to make it stick.

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