The Sixers, who were relatively silent at the brink of the NBA’s 4PM trade deadline, did make one minor move to improve their team’s depth down the stretch. The Sixers acquired guard/forward Sam Young from Memphis in exchange for the rights to Ricky Sanchez. Sanchez’s rights were acquired from Denver along with Reggie Evans back in 2007 for Steven Hunter and Bobby Jones. Sanchez is a Puerto Rican player who has bounced around the NBA’s D-League and International leagues.
Sam Young was the 36th overall pick by Memphis in 2009 after 4 exceptional seasons at Pittsburgh. He hasn’t really panned out to possess superstar potential, but he seems to be a player that will fit well in Doug Collins’ system. He doesn’t do any one thing extraordinary, but he is very versatile and has good basketball intelligence. In 179 NBA games, he averages 6.9 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. He was part of a Pittsburgh senior class that was the winningest in the school’s storied history and finished as their 4th most prolific scorer of all-time.
Now don’t get me wrong, this move isn’t a blockbuster, but I really like it. Firstly because he is a Doug Collins type of player. He can play both guard and forward, he defends both positions very well, and he forces more turnovers than he commits. Secondly, I love what he did for the Grizz down the stretch last season. Memphis made an extraordinary run down the stretch and into the playoffs, eventually falling in seven games to the Oklahoma City Thunder. During that stretch, Young shot nearly 50% from the field and was named a full-time starter. After Young was slotted into the starting lineup, the Grizz went 29-15, which catapulted them into the playoffs. He appeared in all 13 of Memphis’ playoff games and started in 11 of them. He logged about 20 minutes per game, averaging 7.5 points and 2.3 rebounds. He brings a great deal of talent and versatility to a team that already thrives on it, but that energy that he provides down the stretch and his playoff experience may be useful for the Sixers entering April and May.