Julius Randle had a monster game. While he drew a lot of turnovers this game, 8 total, he tightened up his handle in the 2nd half. Three turnovers can account for the soft bounce pass after an initial high post drive. At least three more can account for forced turnovers from double and triple teams. This is not a reflection of him having bad hands. This is a reflection of poor spacing all game long by Kentucky. This was the only downside to his game.
He demonstrated high post play, a crossover dribble, a comfortable handle in a full-court setting, and the ability to work the block on both sides of the paint equally well. Even more impressively, he demonstrated guard-like touch around the painted area. His motor was evident all game long. I liken him to Chris Webber with Zach Randolph touch and rebounding ability. Unlike both players, he has a motor that is simply more active than both. He was a monster on both sides of the glass, showed some comfort pulling up for jump shots from 15′ and in.
A couple of missed free throws late in the game were costly, but this was his 3rd straight 20-10 game, and his best game by far this season. He is a man-child, not by an incredibly explosive vertical like Blake Griffin, but the combination of sheer strength, dexterity, skill level, and motor combined. He nearly fouled out the entire Michigan State front-line by himself. He finished with 27 points and 13 rebounds. Costella, Payne, Valentine, and Guana all had 4 fouls each. Valentine was the guard for help defense. That’s what it took to contain Randle.