Los Angeles Lakers coach Byron Scott explained his side on why he was benching Nick Young for the past 11 games. Scott said that it has everything to do with basketball and nothing to do with Young and D’Angelo Russell playing together.
Scott added that Young was not mentally present because of the recent issues that he was currently facing about his personal life.
Young was placed in the inactive list being replaced by Metta World Peace wherein Scott said that the latter was more valuable player for the Lakers. Young seemed to have difficulty dealing with the video controversy wherein he was recorded by Russell saying that he cheated on girlfriend singer Iggy Azalea.
The clip went viral on social media and affected the relationship between the two Lakers guards and between Russell and other Lakers.
There is no update yet whether Young and Russell had talked about the problem in private or if Young has already forgiven Russell. The younger Laker had been seen making public apologies but there was no response in Young’s side.
Scott said that he understood what Young was going through at this point of his career with the Lakers.
“It’s been tough. This is probably the icing on the cake as far as how tough it can be,” Scott said as per reported via Bleacher Report. “He didn’t get off to a great start. His shooting has not been what it has been in the past. It went even a little downhill to the last couple of months. The situation last week didn’t help. We all as coaches, players and everybody feel for him and we understand the situation he’s in. It’s a tough situation.”
However, despite facing distractions in his career, Scott praised Young’s attitude and intensity during Lakers practices.
Scott did not clarify whether Young would still be in the Lakers inactive list for the rest of the season or he will use him in their remaining games.
The 30-year-old Young was currently undergoing the worst season of his nine-year NBA career. He was averaging 7.3 points, .339 field goal percentage and a player efficiency rating of 9.2.
Nick Young is signed by the Lakers until 2017-18 season