We’re skipped the usual “Rapid Reacts” post that should have followed Saturday night’s loss in Chicago because no one here at Philadunkia could stomach writing about yet another Sixers loss to a top team.
Collins & Co. have now lost three straight and 11 of their last 16. Thanks to an inept half court offense, Philadunkia’s home team is averaging only 84 points per night in their last three contests. Additionally, the Sixers usually outstanding defense has gone MIA in the two most recent games vs. Miami and at Chicago.
There’s no need, to rehash what is wrong with the Sixers right now. The issues have been well documented on this site and we can’t write about them again. Instead we’re going to turn our attention today to the last remotely good thing the Sixers did — acquiring Sam Young.
As you may know, Sam Young is a 6’6 defensive wiz of a small forward, who the Sixers recently from the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for the negotiating rights for Ricky Sanchez. If you recall, Ricky Sanchez was a second round pick (35th overall) in the 2005 NBA Draft by the Portland Trailblazers and was quickly traded to the Nuggets. Sanchez, took some time to make his way from the National Superior Basketball League of Puerto Rico to the United Staes where he eventually spent two years in the D-League before playing pro ball in Puerto Rico again (2007-11), Venezuela (2009), Mexico (2009-11) and Spain (2011-12). Sanchez currently plays in Argentina for Wuber Estudiantes de Bahia Blanca, where the 24-year-old has averaged 13.0 points and 5.1 rebounds in 42 games this season. Basically the Rod Thorn gave up nothing to get Sam Young, which makes this look like a decent trade for the 76ers.
Young is 26 years old and was drafted in the second round back in 2009. If you recall, Young was a key contributor at the University of Pittsburgh back when the Panthers were a Big East power and a NCAA Tourney fixture. As a senior, he was known as their go to guy, on both sides of the ball, finished as the Panthers’ fourth all-time leading scorer (1,884 points) and made the 2009 All-Big East First Team after averaging 19.2 points per game. In short, Young was a very solid college ball player.
Over the last three years, he’s played in 180 NBA games (49 starts) for Memphis and has career he averages of 7 points and 2.4 rebounds a contest. This year the Grizzlies could not find minutes for him — for the season in Memphis he was averaging 3 points and 2 rebounds in just 11 minutes of action — and thus he was expendable. In his rookie season however, he was averaging 7.4 points a game in 16.5 minutes a game. He has hit for a career high 22 points four times during his NBA playing days and scored a season high 20 points back in January vs. Sacto. These outings show that he has the potential to provide some scoring punch off the bench for the 76ers.
The acquisition of Sam Young, adds depth to both the shooting guard and the small forward position of the bench for the 7-6. Young’s addition also adds another solid defensive player to the roster. As a bonus, Young also brings a physical nature of play that the Sixers desperately need. He only played two minutes vs. the Heat, as he spent 16 hours driving to Philly the day before. But in those two minutes, he did manage to get to the FT line, which the Sixers also could use more of each night. Even though this past Saturday night was the second game of a home, then road back-to-back set, Young did not receive any tick vs. the Bulls thanks to a DNP-CD. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Sam!
Overall this is a solid trade for the 7-6, especially given Young’s “potential” and how easily he fits directly into our defense first system. However what kind of impact he can have for this team down the home stretch of this brutal 2011-12 schedule will obviously depend on Collins expanding his rotations and allowing Young to get out on the floor.