Julius Randle had mixed emotions about the NBA’s monthly awards – delighted to win Eastern Conference Player of the Month for April, but charged up about coach Tom Thibodeau’s snub.
Before facing the Nuggets Wednesday in Denver, Randle was asked by The Post if he was surprised Thibodeau didn’t win Eastern Conference Coach of the Month, losing out to Wizards master Scott Brooks.
Before the whole question was out of this reporter’s mouth, Randle stated that he was, “Very surprised by that. There’s no way in hell he shouldn’t have been Coach of the Month. No disrespect to Scott Brooks, he’s doing an amazing job over there with Washington. Just the body of work with what Thibs has had us to all year and throughout the month: nine-game winning streak, 11-4, the way our offense has gone and grown throughout the process of the season.
“Our defense, remaining one of the top defenses. We believe we have the best defense – but remaining one of the top defenses in the league. I don’t see how he didn’t win it. But it’s fine. If you ask Thibs the most important thing is winning games, so that’s all he cares about – that’s all we care about.’’
Brooks, of the surging Wizards, won the award for a 12-5 April. But the Wizards are still 30-35, in 10th place. The Knicks were 11-4 in April behind Randle’s brilliance. He earned Player of the Month honors and his place in the MVP conversation.
“It’s a great honor,’’ Randle said of the monthly award. “As an individual it’s a great honor. But it’s really a testament to everything we’ve done as a team. Same thing as All-Star or Player of the Week. You don’t reach those goals without all of our guys playing well and that’s having team success. It’s really a testament to our team.’’