Los Angeles Lakers guard Nick Young has always been a controversial character in the professional sports world, from his “Swaggy P” alter-ego to his high-profile engagement – and then breakup – with rapper Iggy Azalea. A tape recorded by teammate D’Angelo Russell surfaced which featured Young discussing his challenges with monogamy, and it became the talk of the league near the end of the 2015-2016 season.
Now, it appears that Young is ready to hop into the center of another controversy. San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has become part of a national debate after refusing to stand during the National Anthem as a means of protesting the treatment of African Americans and other minorities in the United States.
In a video recorded by TMZ, Young stated his approval of Kaepernick’s actions and stated that he intends to join his protest:
“I think it’s great…I’m gonna do the same thing, man…my knees hurt but I might sit.”
Of course, Young’s mention of his knees hurting throws into question exactly how serious he is. He is known for his off-the-wall antics, and it’s possible that Young’s comments are not entirely sincere.
On the court, Young has long been rumored to be on his way out of Los Angeles. The Lakers signed him to a four-year, $21.5 million deal in the summer of 2014, after a season in which Young had a career year and helped breathe life into an otherwise frustrated STAPLES Center.
Unfortunately, since signing his deal, Young’s shooting percentage has fallen off a cliff. He is known as a tough shot maker, but provides little else on the court, so if his shot isn’t falling it’s difficult to justify giving him minutes. The Lakers have been trying to trade him for some time, and rumor is that should they not find a suitor, which seems likely, they will consider waiving him.
The deadline to free up cap space this season by waiving and stretching Young’s salary has already passed, but it’s still possible that the Lakers decide to cut him this season. If that were to take place, then it’s likely that Young would have no bench to sit on when the Star Spangled Banner is played.