He is the 76ers most tenured player, as well as their most talented. He probably should of been an All-Star this year, but his team is quite terrible and he isn’t a household name just yet. He is also the only active player making over three million dollars on this on roster. His name is Thaddeus Young and he has been in Philadelphia longer than any other current athlete.
Thaddeus Young is a player that the 76ers organization never utilized to his full potential . Instead of starting a young, energetic, long forward, who could shoot from virtually anywhere, the 76ers front office leaned towards household names like Chris Webber and Elton Brand. No doubt these moves stunted the growth of the 2007 first-round pick out Georgia Tech.
The 2011-12 season had the 76ers essentially six minutes away from a birth in the Eastern Conference finals. They eventually fell in Boston in the thrilling final game of their semi-finals series. I was one to believe that the 76ers had a better chance of causing the Miami Heat some trouble in the next series because of the match up issue that Young would of created at the power forward position.
This season Young has had his best season as a pro, his first as truly being a featured offensive player on this team. He is averaging career highs in points (18.0) assists (2.2) and steals (2.2). His points increase has come from a few different circumstances. First being, he is all that is left on this team.
When the Sixers did their first shedding of major talent at the draft last June, Thaddeus survived the move that signaled the Sixers new era and mentality. Jrue Holiday did not. Then when general manager Sam Hinkie and company decided to really clean house the second time at the recent trade deadline, surprisingly Young was still here wearing red, white and blue. But it was just him and the rookie point guard moving forward with a bunch of projects and D-leaguers. So yeah, when you are the only person who can score, you tend to score.
The second reason is that Brett Brown has essentially unleashed Young on teams this year. In his seasons under Doug Collins, Young was restricted in his shot selection. In his second and third seasons, under the tutelage of Tony DiLeo and Eddie Jordan, Young was putting up a shade over 2.2 three point shots per game. Under Collins, he averaged no higher than 0.3 three point attempts per game in his three seasons whit the coach, including 0.1 attempts from 2011 through 2013. In his one season under Brown he his hoisting up 3.6 attempt per game.
You almost feel like Brett Brown just feels bad for Thad and really can’t tell him to do anything. Just shoot away until we trade you at the end of the year. Sad really.
This season Thaddeus Young gets an A+ for his efforts this season. He is playing out of his mind and for literally no reason. Maybe an audition for future clubs but the effort is much appreciated. Even when this city declared it was totally okay with losing.
Stay or Go:
Despite the great numbers, its time for him to GO. There is nothing for him here. This project, no matter how well the Sixers draft moving forward, will take a few years to come together. Young isn’t well… that young. He needs to capitalize on what he has now, which is essentially the prime of his career. He has been sought after before and teams will jump on the chance to get such a versatile player. Earlier we here at The Sixer Sense wrote an article on possible trade landing spots for Young, think the number of teams will just multiply if and when he become a free agent.
Mr. Young isn’t in the future plans for this team. The 76ers need to do right and give him an opportunity to flourish elsewhere. He was a solid trooper in this lame duck season, and we should all thank him for his service.