Los Angeles Lakers guard Avery Bradley has decided to opt-out of returning to finish out the season in the Orlando bubble due to concerns over his son health.
As such, rumors have quickly begun to swirl about potential replacements for Bradley as the Lakers are permitted to sign someone since he has made that decision. The first name to pop up as a likely replacement is veteran guard JR Smith, whom the Lakers previously worked out when considering players to add during the season.
Smith has reportedly been working out with some Lakers players during the hiatus and is obviously familiar with superstar LeBron James. But Smith isn’t the only flashy, outspoken, veteran guard with ties to the Lakers.
Nick Young was not in the league this season, but has been open on social media about wanting to return. Now with an opportunity potentially presenting itself with his former team, Young has made it clear that he is ready to go if the Lakers need him, via ESPN NBA Twitter:
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) June 24, 2020
Young brings a lot of the same things to the table that Smith would. Young’s forte is shooting as he is a career 37.6% shooter from three-point range, and he experienced the best seasons of his career with the Lakers. In four seasons with L.A., Young averaged 13.1 points while knocking down 37.7% from deep on nearly six attempts per game.
Additionally, Young has championship experience, helping the Golden State Warriors win a title in 2018, though admittedly not playing nearly the role that Smith did with the Cavaliers in 2016. Regardless, Young is someone who brings shooting and championship experience and will not be afraid of the league’s biggest stage.
If Young is in basketball shape he definitely checks a lot of the boxes that the Lakers are looking for in a potential Bradley replacement. The Lakers are looking to make a championship run in this return and any player the team would bring in would need to be capable of helping in that run. Young is someone who has the potential to play that role and there are certainly far worse options available.
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