10 Things You Should Know About Nick Young

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Los Angeles Lakers swingman Nick Young has become one of the league’s most interesting personalities we’ve seen in years. From his boundless energy and his Instagram antics to his alter-ego Swaggy P, where he has over 400,000 followers, we here at SheridanHoops thought that you should get to know the SoCal native better. So here are some things you should definitely know about Young, from his Lakers teammates to the man himself.

Nick YoungYoung doesn’t do pregame interviews- This reporter learned that Young is adamant about not talking to reporters before his games. “This is one thing you should know about me,” Young said in his playful, joking way. “I don’t like doing interviews before the game. I’m superstitious. That’s the one key thing. I told you the secret. The big secret.”

His easygoing personality and energetic spirit is noticed by his teammates. “He brings our spirits up and he’s a tremendous scorer,” said Lakers big man Robert Sacre, who you’ll be hearing from a lot in this article in some animated exchanged with Young.

“He always has a smile on his face,” said forward Ryan Kelly. “His energy kinda brightens up the practice court, it brightens up the room and you always need someone like that on your team.”

The origin of Swaggy P- Young came up with the nickname himself, but he was hesitant to give the real reason behind this bizarre monicker. “I can’t really give you all that. You’re asking a lot of personal questions,” Young said. “Superman didn’t really tell people who he was. I’m super. Super Swaggy P. The name rings bells around here. It’s all in fun and something I came up with.”

Young even commented that some fans may not even know him by his actual given name anymore. ”I don’t think they know my name anymore. I think it’s all I hear when I go out and play, Swaggy P.”

Young wants to be the next Deion Sanders- Though Young wouldn’t say what the P in Swaggy P stood for – it’s another one of his secrets – Young did say that he admires the former football and baseball star and current NFL Network personality. “I’m kinda like the new Prime Time,” Young said. “They call me the new Deion out here, man. Prime Time is like Swaggy P Sr. (laughs).”

“That’s who he is,” Lakers point guard Jordan Farmar agreed. “He’s a new-age Deion Sanders.”

Here’s Young proving he wants to be like Sanders via Instagram:

Photo via Nick Young's Instagram

Photo via Nick Young’s Instagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Young doesn’t use body lotion- In NBA locker rooms after games, it’s very rare to see players not using lotion to moisturize their skin after a long an arduous game takes its toll. If players don’t have their own bottles, they scavange the locker room asking teammates for some. ”Off the court, he doesn’t use lotion,” Sacre said. “So what happens is, he looks like he rolled in baby powder.” Good to know!

Young loves “Eastbound & Down” protagonist Kenny Powers- The recently completed HBO comedy is Young’s favorite show, and he sees a lot of himself in Powers, a fictional baseball player who was very much the showman.

When asked if he thought he had some of Kenny Powers’ personality, Young replied, “most definitely. We move to our own beat, man. We don’t care what people think about us, you just gotta embrace it.”

Young doesn’t wear socks- “When it comes to not playing, after games, he just wears no socks,” Sacre says. “All the time. I don’t think he owns socks. It’s disgusting.” Young wears socks on the court, but apparently his Southern California style is to not wear socks at all, according to Sacre.

Overhearing Sacre, Young asked him what he was just saying. ”I talked about your ashyness, I talked about you not wearing socks,” Sacre replied, which Young was not pleased with. “The not wearing socks thing? You’re talking about all my secrets!”

Young’s love-hate relationship with Jordan Farmar- Both Lakers are from Los Angeles, but Young went to USC and Farmar attended UCLA. Even a recent article in Lakers Magazine highlighted the pair, calling Young and Farmar “Fierce Rivals & Fast Friends.”

“He brings a lot of positive energy to this team even though it’s been a lot of down, negative times,” Farmar said. “We had a good thing going ’til I messed it up.” That statement elicited an exchange between the two:

Young- “I don’t want his comments about me. We were peanut butter and jelly. I ain’t been his friend since last month.”

Farmar- “I tore my hamstring. I get hurt when I need him the most and he turned his back on me. That’s just how it goes.”

Young- “When I need him the most he turned his back on me. That’s what happened. He doesn’t listen.”

All their arguments are really in jest and the two get along really well, as evidenced by their Instagram holiday greeting from December.

Photo via Jordan Farmar's Instagram

Photo via Jordan Farmar’s Instagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Young has a lot of outlandish outfits- “He’s got some crazy stuff in his closet,” Lakers guard Kendall Marshall said. Farmar said that “he has crazy outfits, crazy backpacks, shades, gold chains.” After the Lakers’ loss to the Knicks on Sunday, Young had a shirt from an L.A. store called Kill City, which has some interesting articles of clothing if you browse through the site.

Young questioned this reporter’s usage of “flamboyant” as a way to describe his fashion sense, but Sacre thought it was quite apt. “That’s a great term for him,” Sacre said.

Here’s one example of Young’s outlandish fashion sense:

Photo via Nick Young's Instagram

Photo via Nick Young’s Instagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Swaggy P Movement is spreading- Or at least Young says it is on this Sunday evening in New York, and he vociferously claims that teammates Farmar and Sacre have embraced the movement.

“I didn’t embrace (expletive),” Sacre said. “Put that on record.” That bold statement from Sacre elicited this exchange:

Young: “Look at that shirt! He wasn’t wearing tigers and stuff on his shirt before I came. I made him do that.”
Sacre: “No, no. You see the fur on my coat? I’m a pimp. Put that on record. They don’t know.”
Young: “And that’s what his P stands for.”
Sacre: “God only made one blueprint. I couldn’t handle the competition.”
Young: “See? I’m telling you! The movement is spreading like wildfire.”

Young went so far as to say that reporters will soon be embracing the Swaggy P Movement. “Next thing you know, you’re gonna have a leopard colored cardigan,” he told this reporter.

No matter what happens with the Lakers this season, we definitely know that Nick “Swaggy P” Young is always going to keep things extremely interesting.

On the court, Young is more efficient that most would think. You need to check out this column by colleague Jacob Eisenberg, which will make you think twice before you ever call Young a chucker again.

Shlomo Sprung is a national columnist for Sheridan Hoops who loves advanced statistics and the way they explain what happens on the court. He is also the web editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. A 2011 graduate of Columbia University’s Journalism School, he has previously worked for the New York Knicks, The Sporting News, Business Insider and other publications. His website is SprungOnSports.com. You should follow him on Twitter.

Sprung: Anatomy of the New York Knicks’ Losing Streak

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The Knicks went the entire month of November without a home win and started December the same way. New York lost its ninth straight game and seventh in a row at Madison Square Garden in a tough 103-99 setback to New Orleans on Sunday night.

meloFor a team that was supposed to be at least on the fringe of contention in the Eastern Conference, it’s almost unfathomable that the Knicks are 3-13. Coach Mike Woodson told reporters before the game that the team lacked identity and mentioned how important the three-ball was in today’s NBA.

So the Knicks took 35 3-pointers against the Pelicans. Cause and effect? Perhaps, but the team got way too three-happy in the fourth quarter and ended up missing 10 of its last 12 shots from the arc.

Knicks fans should recognize a real superstar: Indiana’s Paul George

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New York sports fans are very protectively delusional with players they consider stars or superstars. Just look at Mark Sanchez. Or 2013 Derek Jeter. The same thing seems to be happening with Carmelo Anthony, who New Yorkers remarkably revere as a megastar. In reality, Anthony is only average defensively and, so far this season, inefficient offensively. As we’ve seen throughout this season, Melo is certainly no Paul George.

Just consider this sequence over the last five minutes and nine seconds of Wednesday night’s nationally televised Knicks-Pacers game at Madison Square Garden:

PaulGeorgeSH1With just over nine seconds left and Indiana trailing 89-86 in a sluggish contest, George had the ball in his hands. He took a few dribbles and thought that Iman Shumpert, who was doing a nice job defensively on George for most of the game, would foul him early on. The Pacers had been shooting just 69 percent from the free throw line at that point, so fouling before a shot could be put up made sense.

“So I was trying to make a quick play before he could do that,” George said. The plan worked and Shumpert was called for a controversial foul with 5.2 seconds to go. George calmly buried the three free throws “even after being iced with a time out,” as Indiana head coach Frank Vogel pointed out.

After the Knicks called time out to draw up their final sequence, everyone knew who was getting the ball for New York. And it was George who drew the defensive assignment, playing great on-the-ball defense against Anthony in the final sequence. Anthony’s missed shot forced overtime at 89 all.

“To carry the offensive load the way he did and guard Carmelo Anthony basically for 48 minutes, I don’t know where he finds the energy but it’s special,” Vogel said after the game.

In overtime, the Knicks’ big time superstar faded away and wilted under the Garden’s bright lights. But George? George took over the game, leaving Anthony in the dust to wallow in the Knicks’ 3-8 start.

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Omer Asik sits vs. Knicks, Wants to be Traded Again

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The result of the game Thursday night was almost secondary to what happened behind the scenes in the cavernous tunnels of Madison Square Garden.

omer asikUnhappy with his role and the lack of playing time, Omer Asik reportedly asked for a trade at some point before the Knicks and Rockets took the court, as broken by Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. 

SH Blog: Lillard wants to be an All-NBA player next season, Cuban says he will fire anyone who leaks news

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Damian LillardThe consensus heading into the 2012-2013 season was that phenom forward-center Anthony Davis would win the Rookie of the Year award. Not many realized that Damian Lillard would be as good as he proved to be.

Although the sixth overall pick impressed during Summer League action with 26.5 points, four rebounds and 5.3 assists, few believed that it would translate into the regular season, given the presence of LaMarcus Aldridge and the expected breakout of re-signed Nicolas Batum. Along with the presence of Wesley Matthews, Lillard was supposed to be the fourth option at best. Instead, the point guard forced himself into a bigger role and exceeded all expectations to take ROY honors.

[Related: Troll post on why Lillard should thank Anthony Davis and Monty Williams]

He worked relentlessly to become the player he is now, and the desire to be much more has him going even harder this summer. Lillard detailed what he could improve on and what he hopes to accomplish in the upcoming season, from Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld:

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