Steve Kerr, Gilbert Arenas have helped Nick Young through lack of playing time
Nick Young has faced a tough starting stretch coming into the Golden State Warriors rotation, failing to garner many minutes after his 23-point explosion during the season-opener. Young was one of the most coveted shooting guards after an excellent season under Luke Walton, his fourth with the Los Angeles Lakers, garnering the recruiting antics of Draymond Green and Kevin Durant to lure him north.
Yet he’s received constant support through head coach Steve Kerr and former teammate Gilbert Arenas throughout his early-season struggle.
“He texts me all the time,” Young said, according to Logan Murdock of the San Jose Mercury News. “Telling me don’t lose focus, don’t lose confidence. It’s going to take time. He was telling me how it took KD some time in the offense.”
Young struggled to get many minutes through the opening stretch of the season, given his lack of familiarity with the system at both ends of the floor, sometimes looking puzzled on the floor.
Yet as of recently, he’s started to get more looks with different combinations, allowing him to slowly carve a role with this star-studded team.
Arenas, who’s made a career out of being the guy who’s never met a shot he didn’t like, instilled the same confident in the shot-gunning Young — telling him he was signed to this team for a reason.
“Since I came into the league he’s been someone I call just to instill confidence in me,” Young said. “He really knows the game of basketball, he’s just crazy at the same time.”
“He told me it’s a long season and that they’ve brought me here for a reason. Shoot the ball. When you’re thinking, no one wants you on the team when you’re thinking out there. Just be yourself.”
Young will need to claw his way from behind Patrick McCaw and can do so with his prominent shooting, an asset no team can have enough of in today’s NBA.