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Sixers Want Thad Young to Work on Outside Game

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Could be a great thing. Could be negligible.

May have to change that release point.
May have to change that release point.
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The acquisition of Andrew Bynum made Thaddeus Young a much more appealing asset in my mind last offseason. And while Thad had a very nice year without the big man, I still have a bunch of concerns about him as anything more than the 4th option on a good team. He can't really create for himself -- outside of a very quick first step and an Awkwardly Smooth hook, his ball-handling is *ahem* lacking and the jumper is... let's go with "clunky."

For a guy that doesn't go to the line much and doesn't shoot threes anymore, he has to be ridiculously effective around the rim to maintain his unremarkable 54.1 TS%. But in this Chris Vito article about Thad's exit interview, an intriguing nugget was dropped. And that nugget comes with honey mustard and no napkins.

One caveat, though: Young was told by the Sixers’ coaching staff during his exit interview that it would be in his best interest to work on his outside game.

Chris continues as if Thad extending his game out is a bad thing because he shot 39.4% outside of 10 feet last year, but I take it the other way.

If Thad can become the 3-point shooter he was in his second and third pre-Doug seasons (34.5% in over 2 attempts per game), that would make him far and away a more appealing player -- whether that's in Philadelphia or elsewhere remains to be seen.

Now, nobody's asking Thad to become Ryan Anderson, but if he can be above league average on three's a few times each game, that adds a huge element to his game in opening up the floor. I trust a Collins-less Sixers led by the newly analytical Josh Harris to make efficiency the priority and that means more threes and foul shots.

As I've said, though, Thad makes this team too good to fully suck. In spite of how solid he is, the franchise would do better in a rebuild if he were exchanged for younger, cheaper guys and draft picks. But *cue buzzsaw* if Andrew Bynum is still a Sixer next year, Thad -- and Thad's reformed outside shot -- would be integral to this team.

[read this BHolly Fanpost on the Sixers shot selection under Doug Collins. Terrific work here.]