2018 Free Agency

Reports: Julius Randle agrees to two-year deal with New Orleans Pelicans

Hours after the Los Angeles Lakers rescinded their qualifying offer and made him an unrestricted free agent, Julius Randle is reportedly set to join the New Orleans Pelicans.

The former seventh overall pick would join a frontcourt rotation that includes All-NBA big man Anthony Davis and sharpshooter Nikola Mirotic. Here’s more from Will Guillory of The Times-Picayune on the Pelicans’ newest addition:

Four-year veteran Julius Randle agreed to a two-year, $18 million deal with the Pelicans, source confirmed, only hours after losing veteran point guard Rajon Rondo to the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Pelicans will use their midlevel exception to sign Randle and he’ll have a player option in the second year of his deal. If he opts out after the 2018-19 season, he’ll be able to re-enter the free agent market next summer.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski was the first to report the news.

The Pelicans already had limited cap space coming into the summer, and they are expected to use some of their mid-level exception to sign New Orleans native Elfrid Payton after agreeing to a one-year, $2.7 million deal with him on Sunday, according to a source.

Randle is a versatile big that’s capable of making plays in the post or facing the basket. The Lakers gave him more opportunities to handle the ball in the open floor last year, and excelled in that role. The Pelicans allowed Cousins to play in a similar way, and Randle’s skill set should make him a natural fit playing next to Davis.

The four-year veteran is coming off four seasons with the Lakers in which he averaged 13.5 points and 8.9 rebounds per game while shooting 49.3 percent from the field.

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