File this under “not totally surprising given that he hasn’t been cut already and remains under contract,” but Nick Young is expected to participate in the Los Angeles Lakers’ training camp when it kicks off next week according to Mike Bresnahan of Time Warner Cable Sportsnet (h/t Thai Luong of Lakers Outsiders).
The only reason this is a surprise is because of the widely expected tension between Young and D’Angelo Russell after their leaked video incident last season. Young has said he hopes to make up with Russell, but that didn’t stop the team from continuing their attempts to trade him this summer.
The $11 million reportedly remaining on his contract would seem to keep him safe on its face, but the Lakers could waive Young using the stretch provision, allowing them to eat his salary this year and stretch the cap hit of the final year of his deal over three years. If the Lakers had waived Young before August 31st, they would have had to stretch the hit of the final two years of his deal over five years at a higher annual average.
Contract minutiae aside, Young looks to be facing an uphill battle to remain on the Lakers roster. Young joins a crowded camp featuring at least 16 players (including himself) with guaranteed money, plus the recent additions of Metta World Peace and Thomas Robinson on Wednesday.
With Luol Deng and Brandon Ingram taking up the majority of the minutes at the three, it’s hard to see Young playing much of a role this year even if he stays healthy and remains on the roster. However, he’ll evidently be given a chance to show he belongs when camp begins on Monday.