Washington Wizards shooting guard Nick Young will sign the team's qualifying offer for the restricted free agent, which is worth $3.7 million over one year. Young wants a long-term deal worth $9 million a year, but the Wizards have [wisely, in my opinion] refused to agree to such a contract. Young has missed all of training camp and the team's first preseason game, a blowout loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. With Young under contract the Wizards will have all the players from last year's team management wanted to return.
Young started last season on the bench, but became the starting point guard after Gilbert Arenas was traded to the Orlando Magic for forward Rashard Lewis. Young averaged 17.4 points per game last season, easily the best of his career, and he started 40 of the 64 games in which he appeared. His shooting average of 44% and 39% from three point range were both slightly higher than his career averages in those categories. However, he missed 18 games to injury, also easily the most of his career. Young has turned into a very nice catch-and-shoot guard who also shoots a high percentage from the free throw line. He's not as bad defensively as he is rumored to be, but he's not good and he never [I mean literally almost never] passes the ball, resulting in the virtually the lowest assist totals for any starting shooting guard in the league. He also doesn't drive to the basket much, despite having above average athleticism.
I have been in favor of keeping Young and signing him to a long-term deal if one can be reached that pays him no more than $5-6 million a year, but Young wants a lot more than that. Therefore, I think this move is a winner for the team, ensuring the squad's leading scorer from last season returns, but does so at a reasonable price and only for one year. Young will have enormous incentive to have the best season of his career and that should be nothing but good for the Wizards.