General Manager Mitch Kupchak Hopes Nick Young Is ‘Laker for a Long Time’

Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak has been struck by the NBA's version of Cupid's arrow, and it's left him enamored with Nick Young.

Swaggy P signed a two-year contract with Los Angeles over the summer—with a player option for 2014-15—worth just over $1.1 million this season. Less than halfway through 2013-14, he's left his mark on the Lakers organization, exceeding expectations as a fun-loving scorer who bleeds purple and gold.

Young has been so impressive that Kupchak, who's been evasive about Los Angeles' current and future direction, told's Mike Trudell he hopes the shooting guard has a Hollywood-based future:

Going forward, there are a number of things to determine. Who knows. Money is important to Nick as to all players, but you can watch him play and he just loves to play. Some guys treat it as a job, but Nick loves to play. He has fun and basketball is a big part of who it is. Whatever he decides to do with his opt out … we'd certainly like to see him be a Laker for a long time.

No surprises here.

Not only has Young been loyal, he's playing out of his mind, averaging a team-leading 16.3 points per game. Players earning barely $1 million don't normally have that kind offensive output, rendering Young one of free agency's biggest steals. 

But while the Lakers are pleased with his performance, his future with the organization is uncertain.

Young can exercise his player option this summer and ensure he returns for another season, but he would be accepting well below his market value once again. If his current production levels hold, plenty of teams will be willing to award him with a contract that pays him more than the $1.2 million he's projected to earn in Los Angeles next season.

The Lakers can always re-sign him themselves, but they will likely be hesitant to offer him a long-term contract that compr...

About the Author