NBA Rumors: Clippers Must Re-Sign Nick Young for Key Reserve Role

Tim Keeney@@t_keenContributor IMay 28, 2012

MEMPHIS, TN - MAY 13:  Zach Randolph #50 of the Memphis Grizzlies fouls Nick Young #11 of the Los Angeles Clippers in Game Seven of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs at FedExForum on May 13, 2012 in Memphis, Tennessee.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Nick Young is not a starter in the NBA

The Los Angeles Clippers, who reportedly want to re-sign the enigmatic shooter in the offseason, must remember that (via OCRegister.com).

"According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the Clippers are interested in re-signing Nick Young this offseason."

Signing Young would be a good move for the Clips, but again, it hinges on what role they are prepared to put him in. 

At first thought, re-signing Young for the starting lineup seems like a laughable and impossible idea, especially after how up-and-down he was with the Washington Wizards.

However, it's important to remember the Clippers' other potential shooting guards, Chauncey Billups and Randy Foye, both hit free agency this summer as well. 

If they decide to let those guys go, Young is the starter.

And that would be a mistake.

Young is the prototypical hot-and-cold player. In 22 games for the Clips this season, he averaged just 9.7 points per game on 39 percent shooting. 

He'll throw in steals and assists every once in a while, but first and foremost, he is a scorer and a long-range shooter.

And he loves it that way. 

There have actually been a few times this season where I've seen Young start to shoot before the ball even gets to his hands. The guy has no conscience, and sometimes that can be a good thing.

It's a good thing when he's coming off the bench. He provides energy, and when he hits a groove, he'll score 10-12 points in a row.

But the Clippers—or really, any good team—can't afford to continually put someone like that in the starting lineup. They need to have the ability to either give him 15 minutes or 35 minutes on any given night.

Young, when he scores 16 or 17 inefficient points per game, is a fine starter for a young Wizards team, but a playoff team needs more from its starting shooting guard if it intends on competing for a championship. 

The Clips need to decide what they want to be. If they want to make it to the first or second round every year, then yeah, make him the starting shooting guard.

If they want a championship team, they can sign him, but just for energy and instant offense off the bench.