Nicholas Aaron Young (born June 1, 1985) is an American professional basketball player for the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He plays both shooting guard and small forward positions. Young played college basketball for the USC Trojans and was a two-time first-team all-conference selection in the Pac-10. He was selected by the Washington Wizards in the first round of the 2007 NBA draft with the 16th overall pick.
High school career
Born in Los Angeles, California, Young played for Cleveland High School in suburban Reseda, California. He averaged 27.2 points and 10.8 rebounds as a 2004 senior at Cleveland, earning 2004 CIF L.A. City Section, Los Angeles Times All-City and San Fernando Valley first team honors. He shot 57.3% from the field and 46.8% from three-point range (52-of-111), had 48 steals and 41 blocks as Cleveland finished 25–4. Young was tabbed the seventh-best player in the country by HoopScoop and listed by prep basketball guru Frank Burlison as among the Top 50 recruits in 2004. He once scored 56 points in one game and had 23 rebounds in another. He earned CIF L.A. City Section first team honors in 2003 and was included in a list of Top Seniors by Athlon heading into 2004.
Young played for the University of Southern California from 2004 to 2007 and was All-Pac-10 First Team in the 2005–06 and 2006–07 seasons. In the 2007 NCAA Tournament, Young led the fifth-seeded Trojans to a berth in the Sweet Sixteen, where they lost to the one-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels, 74–64. Along the way, Young led USC to a 77–60 first-round win against Arkansas. In the 2nd round, Young led the team with 22 points over the Texas Longhorns in an 87–68 rout of the team featuring the National Player of the Year, Kevin Durant, though Durant led both teams in scoring with 30.
Following his junior season, as expected, Young announced on April 15, 2007 to the Los Angeles Times that he would forgo his senior year to turn professional and enter the 2007 NBA Draft, where he was selected with the 16th overall pick by the Washington Wizards.
Washington Wizards (2007–2012)
On January 9, 2010, Young was fined $10,000 by the Washington Wizards for participating in Gilbert Arenas's antics before a game on January 5, 2010 against the Philadelphia 76ers. Arenas was being investigated for a prior incident involving guns in the Wizards' locker room, but made light of the accusations by pointing his finger at his teammates, as if he were shooting them. His teammates were photographed smiling and laughing with him.
Young scored a career-high 43 points on January 11, 2011 against the Sacramento Kings.
Los Angeles Clippers (2012)
On March 15, 2012, Young was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers in a three-way trade involving the Denver Nuggets and Washington Wizards. Later, on April 16, 2012, he helped the Clippers clinch their first playoff berth in 6 years with a 19-point performance against the Oklahoma City Thunder. He was also a key part of the Clippers' comeback victory against the Memphis Grizzlies in game one of the first round of the 2012 playoffs, making three three-pointers in under a minute.
Philadelphia 76ers (2012–2013)
Los Angeles Lakers (2013–2017)
On July 21, 2014, Young re-signed with Lakers to a reported four-year, $21.5 million contract. During training camp, he suffered a complete tear of the radial collateral ligament in his right thumb, and was expected to miss six to eight weeks. After missing the first ten games of the season with the injury, Young made his season debut on November 18 against the Atlanta Hawks, recording 17 points and 5 rebounds in a 114–109 win. On December 12, he scored a season-high 29 points in a 112–110 win over the San Antonio Spurs.
On November 30, 2016, Young was ruled out for two to four weeks due to a strained right calf muscle. On December 17, 2016, he made eight three-pointers and scored a season-high 32 points in a 119–108 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Between late December and early January, Young's burst from long range gave him 36 three-pointers in eight games—the most in an eight-game stretch in Lakers franchise history. On April 2, 2017, after being held out of 11 of the previous 12 games despite being healthy, Young was shut down by the Lakers for the last five regular-season games. On June 21, 2017, the Lakers announced that Young elected not to exercise his option to extend his contract for the 2017–18 season, thus becoming an unrestricted free agent.
Golden State Warriors (2017–present)
On July 7, 2017, Young signed with the Golden State Warriors. In his debut for the Warriors in their season opener on October 17, 2017, Young came off the bench to hit six 3-pointers and score 23 points in a 122–121 loss to the Houston Rockets.
NBA career statistics
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field goal percentage||3P%||3-point field goal percentage||FT%||Free throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
In 2007, Young became the main subject of a documentary titled Second Chance Season, in which his exploits, shortcomings, and successes are reviewed.
In November 2013, there were rumors that Young was romantically involved with Australian rapper Iggy Azalea after they had contact on Twitter and were seen out on a date. In an April 2014 radio interview with Hot 97, Azalea confirmed that they had been dating for around eight months. They announced their engagement on June 1, 2015. Azalea broke off their engagement a year later. After Azalea broke off her engagement to Young, Keonna Green, with whom Young had a relationship previously and share a son, Nick Jr., confirmed that she is 22 weeks pregnant with Young's second child, a baby girl.
Young's nickname is "Swaggy P", which is in his Twitter handle. According to Young, speaking at the Lakers' 11th Annual All-Access Event in January 2015, the name is a pseudo-biblical reference to "the Prophet of Swag".