Julius Randle would rather play against LeBron James than with him

Julius Randle
Julius Randle poses for a photo with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being selected No. 7 overall in the NBA draft on Thursday by the Lakers.
(Kathy Willens / Associated Press)

A few days before he was drafted by the Lakers with the seventh overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft, Kentucky forward Julius Randle spoke to about fashion, basketball and the prospect of playing with or against LeBron James, a four-time NBA most valuable player 

The 19-year old freshman helped lift the Wildcats to the NCAA championship game before Kentucky fell to the Connecticut Huskies. Now Randle is ready to start his professional career with one primary thing in mind.

“I’m mostly looking forward to competing,” he said. “I feel I have a lot to prove. My goal is to prove that I’m the best.”

James has opted out of his contract with the Heat but may re-sign. Although the possibility exists that he might leave for a team like the Lakers, the odds don’t appear high.


That seems fine with Randle.

“I’d rather play against LeBron. I just have an older mentality,” he said. “I want to beat the best. Maybe in the future I’d want to play with him. I’ve been watching him my whole life. I’d rather compete against him and try and beat him than be on his team.”

As far as his fashion taste, Randle said Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook, along with Lakers free agent Nick Young, are the best-dressed players in the NBA.

“I’m 6-9. But somehow I’m lucky enough to where I can go into Neiman’s and find a shirt I like and it fits just right,” said Randle.


Email Eric Pincus at and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

Get our weekly Lakers newsletter
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.