The NBA season is creeping closer, and it appears the San Antonio Spurs have made one of their final offseason transactions in signing free agent Sam Young. A defensive-minded wing player is a nice pickup for the Spurs. He provides them with some depth at the small forward position, which was their most dire need. Young will likely serve as Kawhi Leonard‘s backup this upcoming season.
Young was drafted in the second round in 2009 by the Memphis Grizzlies, and has career averages of 5.8 points and 2.3 rebounds. After a productive few seasons in Memphis, Young has bounced around the league and has not been able to make much of an impact elsewhere. Well, the Spurs have a history of getting the most out of players like Young, so don’t be surprised if he becomes the solid role player he is capable of being during his tenure in San Antonio.
If you watched the playoffs last season, you will likely remember Young as one of the first players off the bench for the Indiana Pacers. Young did a commendable job guarding LeBron James in that series, but regularly looked lost on the offensive end. Young was at times indecisive, and at other times just looked out of place. The Pacers simply did not have very much offensive firepower, and Young was asked to do a bit too much.
But he should fare much better with the Spurs. They are a team that relies on an offensive system that Young will be much more comfortable in. The Spurs have a whole lot more playmakers than the Pacers did last year, and Young will never be asked to do too much for them. Young is a capable, but inconsistent three-point shooter. Luckily for him, Spurs assistant Chip Engelland is one of the more renowned shooting coaches in the league. I like Young’s chances of developing a three-point corner shot after working a bit with Engelland. Defensively, Young is already more than capable, possessing a good combination of strength, speed and toughness.
Young is just the most recent of a long list of low-key signings by the Spurs that pay dividends. Young will find his niche in San Antonio, and contribute for the team next season.