The NBA is full of break-out stars.
Very rarely do break-out stars exist on the same team, but last year when Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook put up staggering numbers during the season, it was bound that they would contend for a title soon.
It was just this off-season when the Wizards offered up Nick Young to the Portland Trailblazers for Rudy Fernandez and Portland rejected the offer.
Since then, Nick Young has transformed from an inconsistent scorer to a night-in-night-out player that will drop at least 20 in any given moment.
Young is now playing with the best PG he has ever played with in his career, in terms of distributing and getting teammates involved on the court. John Wall is arguably one of the most electrifying PGs to be drafted in the past five years.
The Wizards have a lot to be hopeful for as an organization because they truly have a top-notch back-court to develop around.
When you think of award races for the Washington Wizards, you think of John Wall's race to win Rookie of the Year, but then you think of Blake Griffin and think there is no way Wall can beat out Griffin.
The consensus may be out against Wall, but there is another half of basketball left in the NBA this season and just like the way that injuries lingered John Wall during the season, it could go Griffin's way as well.
As for Nick Young, he is definitely in the Most Improved Player race as he has improved his scoring average by 7.9 points and continues to light teams up any given night.
In order for Young to win, he will also have to step his game up to another level with his competition being Paul Milsap, Russel Westbrook, and maybe Al Horford.
John Wall and Nick Young are the only two players in the Wizards' starting lineup that haven't been suspended or fined in their careers.
Right now, the reputation for the Wizards is they are just a "bunch of young players with talent, but have negative attitudes." This assumption is reasonable for the reason being that the Wizards' two promising bigmen, JaVale McGee and Andray Blatche got into an altercation in a club on Christmas Eve. As well as Blatche last year benching as a result of an argument between him and head coach Flip Saunders.
Rashard Lewis was suspended last year due to using performance enhancing drugs before the season had begun. It really isn't that bad, but trouble is trouble, no matter how you want to look at it.
Now, the franchise rests on two young guards who have experienced negative team issues numerous times and can give the media something positive to talk about other than the negative.
It's great to play well each game, but when you have a great in the spotlight, people start to take names. Especially in Los Angeles, where you can spot over a dozen celebrities in the stands watching the LA Lakers play.
Although the Wizards lost, their back-court put on a show against the Lakers and only lost by three points.
The Lakers had lost all hope of stopping Nick Young from throwing himself a raging homecoming party whenever the Wizards visit. Los Angeles managed a victory that could've gone a lot smoother if Nick Young didn't go off, hitting season-high 30 points, at that time, and six three-pointers to keep the Wizards in the game.
The Zen Master himself said:
"We know when Nick Young comes to town, we're going to give up 25 points. This kid is going to come back to L.A. and have a great game."
John Wall went unnoticed by common folk in the game against the Lakers, but who could blame them?
Nick Young did have a career game against the defending world champs, which was a surprise being that they were playing one of the worst teams in the league.
Wall had 22 points, 14 assists, five rebounds, and three blocks in the game. The most memorable one being the block where he trailed Derek Fisher on a fast break and literally got his head meeting with the rim as he rejected his shot to the Wizards' bench.
America loves the underdog, and if both of them continue to step up in the spotlight against defending champs with no signs of backing down, it can allow the Wizards to rebuild faster than usual.
One thing that attracts the human eye to the television screen are marquee match-ups.
With Wall and Young, there is almost a good match-up from either one of them every game against the NBA's elite.
Let's look at the marquee match-ups from the month of January so far:
- Jan 1: John Wall vs. Chris Paul
- Jan 5: John Wall vs. Jrue Holiday
- Jan 7: John Wall vs. Devin Harris
- Jan 17: John Wall vs. Deron Williams
- Jan 21: John Wall vs. Steve Nash
- Jan 22: John Wall vs. Rajon Rondo
- Jan 25: John Wall vs. Chauncey Billups
For Nick Young:
- Jan 5: Nick Young vs. Evan Turner
- Jan 8: Nick Young vs. Stephen Jackson
- Jan 13: Nick Young vs. Wesley Johnson
- Jan 15: Nick Young vs. Demar Derozan
- Jan 22: Nick Young vs. Ray Allen
If the Washington Wizards are known for something in the league, it is the numerous amounts of funny personalities they have in the locker room. Nick Young is the centerpiece of the humor.
Nick Young mainly takes this attribute as John Wall is more of the serious guy in front of the camera and tends to shy away from making jokes. Watching funny guys off the court put in work on the court is what makes players like Shaq and Ron Artest fan favorites and there should be no reason whatsoever to why Nick Young shouldn't be put in that category.
The reason people watch the game of basketball is for competition and when you see a player from a horrible team show up a superstar from the NBA's elite, people start to notice.
Especially when it is against the most hated player in the NBA.
Nick Young dropped an amazing 30 points against the star-studded Miami Heat, where he was first guarded by Dwayne Wade, and then when the Heat took notice, was guarded by Lebron James.
The story of David and Goliath matches this story perfectly as everyone in the building doubted the Wizards when they went up against the Heat and showed fire. Nick Young was shooting shot after shot in Wade and James' faces.
Putting up a fight like Young did is exactly what people like to see in a basketball game, and believe it or not, this happens almost every night. Either John Wall or Nick Young will challenge the best player in the opposing teams' backcourt to match up with their abilities.
Speed is usually the first thing that pops into people's minds when they think of John Wall and what he brings to the table. With so much hype, comes so many people looking to see if he will live up to the hype.
When you turn your head to look at the time and look back at the game seeing that John Wall has already dribbled the ball down the court and made a layup on the other end, that is speed.
Even one of the fastest NBA players in my opinion, Ty Lawson, explains how fast Wall is compared to him.
"You know, honestly, he’s all one speed right now, and that speed is blinding. I mean, literally, I had to sprint a couple times to get back, and I still was behind him, and he had the ball and I didn’t. It’ll probably take him his whole rookie year and the summer to truly learn, because he’s not that far removed from high school. Next year, he’ll be killing folks."
With John Wall pushing the ball up the court, unlike what Gilbert Arenas used to do when he had his stint with Washington, it allows more scoring opportunities for Nick Young where he can display his excellent finishing abilities.
Style is great, but with a bunch of young players on the team a coach wants to make sure that they don't take "style over substance".
But, most of the time, the players ignore the coach, which is what makes this duo even more exciting to watch. Nick Young has pulled off a lot of mind-blowing layups in his career, but this year he has pulled off two 360 layups with defenders all over him. The first one was against the LA Lakers where he split a double team and then drove to the hoop where he met Lamar Odom trying to set a charge and broke out in a 360 layup.
Style may not be the most useful on the court, but it can quickly allow a player to become a fan favorite and get your own styles in videogames.
Potential is probably the most commonly used word in the NBA when drafting or trading for a young prospect in the league.
Everyone knows that John Wall's potential is through-the-roof, but people don't tend to look at what Nick Young can become.
Nick Young is 25, which isn't too old, being that he is a shooter, in which shooters usually last long in the league. He was on a team with all-star veterans in Caron Butler, Gilbert Arenas, and Antawn Jamison.
So he should know how to conduct himself (thanks to Butler and Jamison), and how not to conduct himself (thanks to Arenas) on and off the court.
A dream-case scenario for John Wall's potential would be the next Rondo or the next Rose, with a slightly better jump shot, as for Young, I would say a poor-man's Kobe Bryant.
Wall and Young are the type of people where you will watch them and call out, "He will be the next____."