Nick Young enjoyed playing for Rockets’ Mike D’Antoni

Nick Young #6 of the Golden State Warriors (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Nick Young #6 of the Golden State Warriors (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

Veteran sharpshooter Nick Young enjoyed his days playing for Houston Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni.

Mike D’Antoni is known for employing unique offenses, which has earned him the reputation of being an offensive connoisseur. D’Antoni’s tenure with the Houston Rockets has been further proof, as his system has contributed to James Harden’s yearly increases in scoring from 2016-2019, which were each of MDA’s first three seasons in Houston.

Regardless of which players have been on the roster, the Rockets have led the league in 3-pointers in each of D’Antoni’s four seasons at the helm. It’s well known that players around the league like playing for D’Antoni, as he’s known for encouraging players to shoot without hesitation.

Current free agent Nick Young also sang D’Antoni’s praises, as he previously played under the Houston Rockets coach during the 2013-14 season with the Los Angeles Lakers. Young was on the Knuckleheads podcast and stated, “D’Antoni was cool. He’ll let you hoop and shoot.”

Nick Young enjoyed playing for Rockets’ D’Antoni

During Young’s lone season under D’Antoni, he reached career-highs in scoring, as he averaged 17.9 points per game. Young also attempted 5.2 triples per game that season, which was the second-most of his 12-year career, while also making 38.6 percent of his threes.

Young also posted a career-high in player efficiency rating that season, in addition to posting a true shooting percentage of 56.4 percent, which is also second-best of his career. Swaggy P later joined the Golden State Warriors during the 2017-18 season and provided solid 3-point shooting off the bench, as he made 37.7 percent of his attempts, which was fourth-best among players appearing in at least 50 games, behind Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry, and Kevin Durant.

It was there in Golden State that Young became a champion, and he made 40 percent of his triples when the Dubs faced off against the Houston Rockets in the 2018 Western Conference Finals.

Young last played for the Denver Nuggets in the 2018-19 season, albeit for a brief four games, yet still made 37.5 percent of his threes. All in all, Swaggy P is a career 11.4 point scorer, and has a career 37.6 percent 3-point shooting average.

The Rockets currently have an open roster spot, following the news of Thabo Sefolosha respectfully declining to join the team in Orlando. But we’ve heard the Rockets intend to use that spot on Luc Mbah a Moute, whose 3-and-D abilities were pivotal during the Rockets’ record-breaking 2017-18 campaign.

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It seems highly unlikely that Swaggy P and D’Antoni will be re-uniting in the Space City, but it’s safe to say Young wouldn’t be opposed to it.