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Julius Randle recalls his first encounter with Kobe Bryant


This is a pretty cool story.

For Julius Randle, the opportunity to workout for the Los Angeles Lakers and visit their practice facility in El Segundo was a dream come true.

After reportedly putting on great show during his solo workout last week, Randle – who revealed that he was a huge Lakers fan – told the media how the entire experience gave him goosebumps.

However, this wasn’t the big man’s first encounter with the purple and gold.

During his post workout interview, Randle recalled the first time he “met” Kobe Bryant.

“The first time I went to a Lakers game I was probably in like sixth or eighth or seventh grade and I had courtside seats,” Randle said, according to Dave McMenamin from ESPN Los Angeles. “Kobe (Bryant) was warming up and I’m on the sideline and I’m going, ‘Kobe! Kobe! Kobe!’ And he wouldn’t turn around. I guess he probably got annoyed with me. I go ‘Kobe!’ and he (slapped my hand). Then he just turned back around and started shooting. I mean, that was enough for me. I said I wasn’t washing my hand for a year.”

If Randle ends up falling to the Lakers at seven, there is a good chance the Kentucky product will be getting high-fives from Kobe on a nightly basis.

Although, the five-time NBA champion surely wouldn’t give Randle an easy ride, and the 19-year-old knows that.

Randle acknowledged that Bryant would be tough on him as he is on all rookies (and all teammates, for that matter), though the projected lottery pick says he is ready for the challenge if he is indeed wearing purple and gold next season.

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Written by Ross Pickering

Ross Pickering is the founder of Lakerholicz.com. He's here to bring you daily updates on your Los Angeles Lakers, despite living 5,485 miles away from L.A. in England. You can follow him on Twitter: @RossPickering

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