The Knicks’ Julius Randle says the preseason finale is a flash of efficiency

20 and 10 rebounds. Eight shots on 13 attempts. Four made 3-pointers on six attempts. Only one twist – albeit a big one preseason loss to the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.

This is the definition of improved efficiency Julius Randle Mentioned during training camp in Charleston, SC in early October. And if the limited sample size is any indication of the level of play to expect from the three-time All-Star this season, another jump in production for the Knicks star could be in the cards.

Randle, who was one of just four NBA players to average 25 points, 10 rebounds and four assists last season — the other three are league-best players — is looking to build on his performance in the preseason finale.

“For me, it’s just getting more efficient, pick my spots and the shots I’m trying to get to,” he said after Saturday’s practice in Tarrytown. “When I break down the defense and get into a certain area off my read, whether it’s a shot or a pass, I’m going to continue to build from that.

It’s one of the things head coach Tom Thibodeau loves most about his star forward: Randle is constantly looking to improve, and his stats show it every season.

“That’s what makes him who he is,” Thibodeau said Saturday. “He’s never satisfied.” And so if you look at his career, every year he gets better. So keep growing.”

Randle then played sparingly in the first two preseason games sat third in Boston like front foot back to back. He played 29 minutes in the Finals against the Wizards, closer to his normal share, but Randle’s performance was marred by an overall poor team effort that led to the home loss.

Thibodeau sees progress, albeit in limited exhibition play.

“I think there’s a lot of finesse to his game and he’s worked incredibly hard on his shooting,” he said of Randle. “And I think the blast to the brim. As if no one wanted to see Julio Randle go down the side of the hill. I know I coached against him, but I think adding the 3-point shot was huge for him. Drawing crowds was huge for him. And then get easy baskets.”

Thibodeau noted two areas Randle is aiming for this season. “He’s a great athlete,” he said.

“So running on the floor. Movement without the ball. I think when you add those things to it, it makes his game easier.”

What has undoubtedly improved for Randle is his three-point shooting.

Randle finished the preseason shooting 7-of-13 — 53.8 percent — from downtown. A number of those threes had a hand in his face and he laughed when asked about the questionable nature of some of his shot attempts.

By comparison, he shot 34% from three last season, roughly in line with his career average.

“I mean, I try to get as easy a shot as possible, but at this point in my career, all those shots are just repetitions,” Randle said. “So I’m continuing to get my reps, I’m continuing to clean up my footwork and I’m continuing to try to find ways to get easier baskets.”

His effective night against the Wizards also came as he continued to battle through off-season arthroscopic left ankle surgery.

“Yes, I still (do maintenance). It’s still a process,” he said on Saturday. “I’m not going to lie and say I’m back to 100 percent or whatever, but I’m feeling pretty good, pretty confident and day by day, week by week I’m getting stronger.”

“If this rehab process has taught me anything, it’s to take things one day at a time. That’s exactly what I’m continuing to do and I’m seeing improvement every day.”

On one possession against the Wizards, Randle faked to get his guard, Deni Avdija, out of position before going downhill and Washington linebacker Mike Muscala appearing on the rim.

In the same quarter, he hit back-to-back 3-pointers over Avdija’s outstretched arm. Avdija is considered one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA who has the size to match Randle’s skill set.

Thibodeau said the continued recognition of easy shots versus tough contested looks will help Randle make another leap in his game. He is a confidant of both Randle and i Jalen Brunson will improve because of what he sees behind the scenes.

“I think the great players in this league add something every year. So not being complacent and understanding the commitment that goes into what (Brunson) has done throughout his career,” Thibodeau said. “So I don’t expect that to change. And that’s what I love about (Brunson) and Julius, they’re both incredibly hard workers. They do not lack exercise. They don’t lack for games, and that’s why they keep getting better. “

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