Throughout the entire offseason, there were rumors about the Los Angeles Lakers trying to get rid of Nick Young. After an awful season in which he gave the Lakers nothing on the court, and was involved in the now-infamous off-court incident with D’Angelo Russell, most assumed there was no chance Young would be on the Lakers’ roster.
Young did speak with new head coach Luke Walton over the summer and did say that he felt good about everything that they talked about. Now with training camp here, Young has the chance to prove to Walton that he deserves a spot on this Lakers roster, and he believes he can thrive in this situation.
According to Mark Medina of the LA Daily News, Young not only believes he fits in Walton’s offensive system but also sees Walton’s overall demeanor as a nice change:
“The style of play fits my style,” Young said of Walton, who served as an assistant for the Golden State Warriors the past two years. “I can still be me here a little bit and nobody here is harping on my personality no more. That’ll be all right.”
Opportunities may be very tough to come by for Young considering the additions the Lakers made this offseason, but he maintains that he will be ready when the time comes:
“I’ll keep that jump shot right,” Young said. “The rest will come. I’ll keep working hard. That’s all I can really do is work hard and take advantage of my opportunities.”
Both Luol Deng and Brandon Ingram will get plenty of minutes at Young’s ideal position of small forward and with D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson getting all the minutes they can handle in the backcourt, and Lou Williams likely to get his share as a backup two-guard, it’s tough to see Young cracking Walton’s rotation.
Regardless, he is saying the right things and his attitude sounds great. Every NBA team needs shooting, and if Young can find his stroke again, maybe he could provide the Lakers an occasional spark off the bench.