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Nick Young era may have ended in Los Angeles, opts out of contract with Lakers

Jun 24, 2014, 3:19 PM EDT

Nick Young AP

The Swaggy P era in Los Angeles may be dead.

It’s not a surprise, but Nick Young — the gunner with no conscience who became a Lakers’ fans favorite in an otherwise dismal season — has opted out of his contract with the Los Angeles Lakers and will become a free agent, reports Dave McMenamin of

Nick Young has informed the Los Angeles Lakers that he will not pick up his player option and will become a free agent, his agent Mark Bartelstein told….

He had already made it clear he would not exercise the $1.2 million player option for next season and test free agency in hopes of landing a more lucrative, long-term deal. Young also expressed his desire to remain with the Lakers if possible.

Young was everything you need to be a star in Los Angeles — he is flashy and entertaining on and off the court. He averaged a career best and team best 17.9 points a game last season and did it with a career best true shooting percentage of 56.6%. He dropped 40 points twice. He shot 38.6 percent fro three but in general was a mix of good and bad shots, he just hit more of them. He looked every bit the guy who should be a sixth man on a good team, coming in off the bench with a green light to lift a team up.

Young, a Los Angeles native who played his college ball just down the street from Staples Center at USC, has said he hopes to remain with the Lakers. He just wants to get paid. He wants to be shown the Lakers really want to keep him by the urgency and size of their offer. The market suggests he would make $5 million a year or more for that skill.

Whether the Lakers will do that remains to be seen. This is a team protective of its salary cap space as it tries to rebuild and they are not going to give big money multiple years to a player and mess up that cap space.

The Lakers will take their big swings at LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony this summer, selling the Laker brand and playing with Kobe Bryant, but if they strike out the team is expected to sign a number of one-year deals (as they did this past season) to keep their options open for future big strikes.

That could mean the end of the Swaggy P era in Los Angeles.

  1. orlandochamps - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:30 PM

    Re-sign him Lakers. 3 years for 7 million. But the last year should be team option.

    • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:35 PM

      i like the contract numbers you stated but I think he may want more…but who knows.

    • orlandochamps - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:59 PM

      ok ok, I’ll give him 3 years for 15 million. And im still keeping the team option the last year

      • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:21 PM

        its a deal! i’ll get Swaggy the paperwork right now!

      • 00maltliquor - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:49 PM

        I might be nit-picking but 3 years, 13 million (with that 3rd yr. team option) would be PERRRFECT.

  2. sjtorpitt - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    You think he’s going to take that offer? A little over 2 mil a year? He’ll get at the very least 4mil/yr.

  3. seattlesuperchronic - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:37 PM


    I could imagine him wanting a max contract, because, you know, he’s Swaggy F’n P!

    • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:23 PM

      i bet swaggy would ball hard playing against some 8th graders! just because he can!

  4. billtetley53 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    It says in the article market value is 5 mil per year. Why would he take half that?

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:00 PM

      yeah, WHY would he?

      great point bill, he just saw them quadruple the pay over market value of a much older, broken down teammate of his too…

      • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:25 PM

        ouch. the truth hurts. yeah, Lakers really screwed that up. sure, they get the money “back” through various means…but in salary cap world, it sunk the Lakers.

      • therealhtj - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:45 PM

        If Swaggy wants to take 3.5/yr or so on a 3 year deal in some podunk market, then he should jump at the chance. To a team like the Lakers putting a premium on cap flexibility, he’s not worth more than that on a 1 year deal.

        5 million a year for a guy like him in today’s CBA would start a fan revolt.

  5. getlow81 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:43 PM

    Am i the only one who thinks an “Era” is a term that should be used for a longer period than one year? There’s nothing distinctive about a one year non-playoff season for any player.

    • paleihe - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:50 PM

      It was a joke.

      • p31squared - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:47 PM

        I thought the same thing and I didn’t take it as a joke. Did you write the headline? “Era” is laughable.

      • paleihe - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:22 PM

        You didn’t take it as a “joke”, but you thought “era” was laughable.

        I’ll let that stew for a bit.

  6. sportsfan18 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    2 yrs and $48.5 million…

    Makes it easier for the team… contract is already made up, just gotta type in Young’s name is all…

  7. thehawg - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:23 PM

    The Lakers have one less Problem without you.

    • asimonetti88 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:17 PM

      Him and Pau were the Lakers’ two best players last year

      • 22yearsagotoday - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:45 PM

        Who needs stinkin’ facts?

      • thehawg - Jun 27, 2014 at 6:34 PM

        Listen to the song “Problem” by Ariana Grande & Iggy Azeala (Nick Young’s alleged girlfriend).

  8. luz56 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:25 PM

    3 years 12. M gets it done….. Elsewhere .. The Hollywood Fakers are in trouble and if you think players today want to play for the brand your mistaken it’s all about the money.. BY THE WAY Clippers are now real competition in that market

    • asimonetti88 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:19 PM

      Swaggy is a born and raised Angeleno, he said that playing for the Lakers was his biggest dream come true.

      • 22yearsagotoday - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:46 PM

        But since it’s a business, he might decide to leave The Promised Land…to take care of his family and future, of course.

  9. unxpexted1 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:26 PM

    HOnestly, if he wasn’t on such a bad team he would have had six man of the year talks, his numbers were pretty compatible to jamal crawford. He’s proven he can score of the bench, and can start when needed. It’s the nba, so three years 15-18 milly, souns about right.

    • therealhtj - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:46 PM

      On a good team, he’d have been luck to average half his totals and without the volume, the percentages would’ve gone way down too.

  10. ptownbearsfan420 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:40 PM

    I would freaking love to see Mr P in a trailblazers uniform next year too. But thats probably wishful thinking..

  11. skins26portis - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:47 PM

    Lakers fans do not like LeBron James but if he should sign with the Fakers then they would be all on his Nuttz. James has no interest in playing with Kome Bryant. James talked to Dwight Howard and got the 411 about how that would be like. Dwight still has tire tracks on his back from getting thrown under the bus by Kobe . Laker fans if you get Mello you still will suck cause he hasn’t won since he has been in the league. Get use to another season not making the playoffs .

    • bougin89 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:16 PM

      I haven’t heard/read anyone talk/write like that since, well, Clinton Portis…

      • asimonetti88 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:20 PM

        Hooked on Phonics is apparently not available in the DMV.

      • 22yearsagotoday - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:48 PM


  12. azarkhan - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:02 PM

    There was a Nick Young “era” in LA? Really?

    • ranfan12 - Jun 24, 2014 at 8:54 PM

      mini showtime nick young era when they weren’t losing lol. that’s better than nothing

  13. soundsofsuccess7 - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:11 PM

    Author of the column seems to be out of the loop..

    We knew Young would opt out- he wants a longer term deal. This doesn’t mean he’s leaving the Lakers at all, this doesn’t mean the Swaggy P era is over.

  14. ranfan12 - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:37 PM

    if the basketball gods and get mda to resign, they can get swaggy p back for a decent price.

  15. djjeremiahj - Jun 24, 2014 at 8:22 PM

    How many rumors does this guy have to write? And does he know basketball and do research?
    Young can be resigned using his BIRD RIGHTS. So unless the team doesn’t want to spend $, he can AND WILL be retained.
    – It would make no sense NOT to pay him $, when you can go over the cap for ANY AMOUNT you want.

  16. provguard - Jun 24, 2014 at 9:34 PM

    I’m up for someone just giving him $100 if he will leave LA… This guy would have problems with Bryant or Anthony, not enough basketballs allowed in a game…

  17. fordmandalay - Jun 25, 2014 at 12:21 AM

    Lakers can’t let a haircut like that slip away.

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