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NBA-Knicks’ Randle says maximizing pandemic downtime fueled sensational season

Julius Randle said that instead of being discouraged by the seemingly endless COVID-19 lockdown, the New York Knicks’ forward seized on the opportunity to fine-tune his physical and mental game, changes he said led to his MVP-caliber season. The 26-year-old emerged from the time off better than ever, posting career highs in points, rebounds and assists to lift the long-suffering Knicks to their first playoff appearance since 2013, a feat few saw coming. “I was able to make great use of my time,” Randle told Reuters about his extended time away from the court, which was made longer by the fact the Knicks did not qualify to play inside the NBA bubble last season.