The Nets will have plenty of cap space for free agency, although this year’s crop isn’t as prolific as the last and, conceivably, the next. One player who should garner their attention is Philadelphia forward Thaddeus Young, a restricted free agent after this season, who dominated the Nets on Friday by scoring 22 points on 9-of-12 from the field.
Even before Young’s standout performance in Philadelphia's 115-90 victory, coach Avery Johnson was gushing about the 22-year-old. He’s not on the level of New Jersey’s 2012 target, Dwight Howard, but he’s the type of versatile forward the Nets are missing (and thought they were getting with Travis Outlaw).
“If (Young) didn’t have the type of year he’s had, I don’t think the (76ers) would be a playoff team,” Johnson said. “He’s kind of the MVP of the team.”
The 76ers will likely extend an offer sheet to Young and try to match whatever else surfaces, but are in a tough spot because he plays behind Elton Brand and Andre Iguodala and their big contracts. Both Brand and Iguodala are signed through the 2012-13 season. Young was the subject of trade rumors before the February deadline seems intrigued by free agency.
“In order to find out what I’m worth, it’s a must,” he said. “You have to find a team in order to get paid being a restricted free agent.”
Ironically, Young’s current GM – Rod Thorn – is responsible for negotiating a good portion of the contracts on the Nets’ roster. Thorn brought in Outlaw, Anthony Morrow, Jordan Farmar and Johan Petro over the summer.
“Some have played better than others,” Thorn said. “A couple of them have played well, a couple of them have played as well but overall I think they have a much better bench than we had last year. They have much better players than we had. So they’re on the right road.”
“You have to look at what’s available,” he added. “We made a big push for Boozer. We didn’t get him. We made out push at Tyrus Thomas. We didn’t end up getting him. So it’s who’s available. We had a lot of spots to fill so we ended up signing the guys that we signed.”
I think he'd be a great fit. Brings alot of what Rudy Gay does. Should be cheaper than Chandler and averages similar numbers. Could frontload the deal. Him, Afflalo, and Hump would be a nice offseason for me. Thoughts?