Trae Young proved a lot of doubters wrong last season as he led the unheralded Atlanta Hawks to a deep run in the NBA Playoffs.
It has been quite evident that Young is a man on a mission, and with the new season still a few weeks away, the fiery playmaker is already grinding it out.
He recently joined a pickup game, featuring NBA free agent dennis smith jr. The two explosive guards were on opposite teams and they quickly made it a gung-ho affair, exchanging baskets, highlight plays, and of course, swaggy staredowns (via Ball Is Life).
It was entertaining, to say the least. At one point, Young even chased down Smith and gave a hard foul to stop him from throwing down a vicious slam. The competitiveness surely wasn’t lacking.
The offseason, however, has been contrasting for the two studs. Young recently secured the bag with a $207 million extension with the Hawks for five years. Smith, on the other hand, is still searching for a new squad after he was let go by the Detroit Pistons.
Smith was highly touted as an athletic guard out of North Carolina State and was drafted ninth overall by the Dallas Mavericks in 2017. Incidentally, the following year, the Mavericks selected Young as the fifth overall pick. He was immediately traded to the Hawks for Luka Doncic, who took over the playmaking duties from Smith. Since then, Smith has struggled to find his niche in the NBA.
Maybe Trae Young can convince the Hawks to take a crack at Dennis Smith Jr.