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NBA Free Agent Rumors: Julius Randle ‘made it clear’ he doesn’t want to return to Lakers

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Julius Randle has done plenty to show his worth to the Lakers, but apparently that might not have been enough to make him want to stick around.

NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Los Angeles Lakers Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Julius Randle went in one season from a cap casualty to legitimately valuable role player. It seems that wasn’t to convince the Lakers to make him feel wanted, though, according to NBA.com’s David Aldridge. This would be quite the disappointing development in an offseason that’s already seen the Los Angeles Lakers miss out on Paul George.

Here’s what Aldridge had to say about what he’s heard regarding talks between Randle and the Lakers:

Julius Randle has made it clear that I don’t think he really wants to be back there, so are you putting money into a guy that doesn’t really want to be back there.”

If Randle were to leave, he would be the second client of Aaron Mintz (after Paul George) to spurn the Lakes since D’Angelo Russell (another Mintz client) was shipped off to the Brooklyn Nets, potentially a trend worth noting.

Randle potentially being annoyed with the Lakers after they yanked his minutes around last season wouldn’t be all that surprising, but a post from his wife might give some pause as to how real those feelings are.

Thank you @artmobb for making my vision come to life! Everyone check him out!

A post shared by Kendra Randle (@kendrarandle_) on

Call me crazy, but I don’t think many mothers would commission an image that obviously pro-Laker if her husband was so frustrated with the organization.

The Lakers’ top focus this offseason has been LeBron James. That much has been clear. Maybe they didn’t show enough interest in Randle, and maybe he wanted to feel more wanted. I’m not here to refute that. But the idea that he totally and completely wants out might be a little unrealistic.

Maybe this all blows over and Randle remains a Laker. Maybe he really does feel this way and departs as soon as another deal comes in. At the end of the day, Randle needs to field an offer the Lakers won’t match and, given the way things are going, that might not be out there. So he may be back, regardless of what he wants right now.

This probably isn’t getting revolved all that soon, but this is absolutely something to keep an eye on, given how valuable Randle was last season and could be moving forward.