He’s ready to break out…
Thad Young is one of the better NBA players not yet in his prime and is beginning to understand his worth and the NBA business game as well. In an appearance on 97.5, The Fanatic in Philadelphia, Thad played his cards face up when hosts Brian Baldinger and Harry Mayes asked about his current restricted free agent status:
“If I get a better offer from another team the Sixers will have to either match or come better. That’s the only way it’ll work out.”
It’s been frustrating for Thad. He seemed as if he was going to break out a lot sooner at the end of Maurice Cheek’s tenure…but coaching changes stunted his growth. With Eddie Jordan in particular, Young was out of sorts because of how the ball shifts in the Princeton offense. He spent a lot of time on the bench under Jordan and little injuries here and there didn’t help.
The Sixers are in flux again with word the team is for sale and Andre Iguodala in all kinds of trade rumors…the latest being a deal sending him the the Lakers (Mike Brown digs him) for a combination of Lamar Odom, Ron Artest and Luke Walton. Philly will pick 16th in the NBA Draft tonight.
With the lockout looming, it would behoove the Sixers to wait and see how everything shakes out. There are very few players who are untouchable in the league regarding trades but the Sixers would be smart to explore all options tonight and logically do the right thing with Young. How they deal with Young will go a long way with fans. Philly is beginning to buzz about the Sixers for the first time since Iverson left, returned (I called it here) and left again; Thad has done everything that has been asked of him, is a great character guy and I’m sure league wide front offices are salivating at the prospect of landing such a talented young player with his commitment to the game. Heading into his 5th season, Thad is averaging 12.5 points and 4.9 rebounds but stats don’t tell the story of his pedigree. He’s a player who is a hard guard at the 3 or the 4 because of his length, slashing talent, capable shooting touch and change of pace athletic ability from the left side. He’s a classic player in a sense because he’s free of everything sports stereotypical.
Again, Philadelphia cannot foul up dealing with Young because the organization is one of the league’s most historically successful franchises yet currently hover around the middle of the pack. Young, along with Jrue Holiday, is the cornerstone of the franchise and definitely a fan favorite. Philadelphia had a good season under first year coach Doug Collins and played the Miami Heat close before bowing out in five tough games (Thad had a great series) but somehow, some way it’s time for the franchise to get back into the NBA elite now…not later.
Anything else is unacceptable.
Hat tip to Devon Givens. Happy Birthday man!