Even though the Los Angeles Lakers won their third straight game, in dominating fashion no less, head coach Byron Scott was unhappy with the performance of his bench at the outset of the fourth quarter. This led to Scott pulling them and re-inserting the starters, something that did not sit well with Julius Randle.
Randle was visibly frustrated on the bench after being put on the bench as the Suns cut a once 38-point lead to only 15.
Afterwards, Scott revealed that he talked with Randle on the bench and had a very simple message for the talented forward according to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News:
Byron said he talked with Julius after the game amid his frustration for being taken out. Byron's message: "Guard your man."
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) January 4, 2016
Though it very well may be unrelated to what took place in the fourth, Randle was out of the locker room before the media could speak to him according to Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times:
Lakers locker room just opened and Julius Randle was dressed and out before we media types got in
— Eric Pincus (@EricPincus) January 4, 2016
Obviously, Randle leaving early doesn’t mean that he was still angry about being pulled out of the game or angry at Scott. Metta World Peace was also seen talking to Randle on the bench and calming him down.
Randle is a very competitive player and being pulled out of the game would obviously not sit well with him. Scott going back with the starters, however, seemed like a necessary move considering the run the Suns were on at the time.