The Los Angeles Lakers are in the midst another long offseason after missing the playoffs for the fourth season in a row.
This has given the Lakers' young core extra time to work on their game, getting into their summer workouts over a month ahead of teams still battling in the postseason. That's great news for president of basketball operations Magic Johnson, who wants his team to focus on developing their fitness.
Enter Julius Randle, the Lakers bull of a power forward. Randle's game is built around speed and overpowering his opponents as he charges to the rim. He's been hitting individual workouts away from the team for the past month, and the results are absolutely amazing.
One of the big question marks hanging over Randle's head heading into draft night was his conditioning and overall physical fitness. A foot injury heading into his rookie season was troubling, and breaking his leg in the first game of the regular season was devastating.
Randle made his triumphant return in his Sophomore season and looked like a double-double machine as a Junior in the NBA. Julius looks like he's honed in on making his fourth season in the league his best yet, shredding serious body fat with his new trainer.
The side-by-side comparison is stunning, and the caption points to this being slightly over three weeks worth of work that led to this body transformation:
Johnson has stressed how serious he wants the young Lakers to take their physical fitness, with the team replacing their old training team with a new vision and leader. Cutting down body fat for muscle is one of the things the Magic Man is demanding from his team.
Randle seems to be well on his way in that department, looking leaner than ever while building muscle. If that's only about a month worth of work, where will he be on opening day in about five months? Julius' progress this summer could lead to big gains for the Lakers.
LA's future is looking brighter by the day, with momentum building up since the moment they secured the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. If the lottery talents they've already drafted continue improving, the Lakers are on their way back into being a competitive team.
Julius looks like he'll be ready to hit the ground running once the team comes together for training camp. With reports pointing to the team taking Lonzo Ball with the No. 2 pick, he'll need that conditioning while D'Angelo Russell and Ball push the pace.