Nick Young has begun shooting without a cast, reports Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com, giving the Lakers hope that one of their top scorers could return soon. Young signed a new four-year, $21.5MM contract with the team in July, but underwent surgery last month on a torn radial collateral ligament in his right thumb. He has not played this season, and he has not been cleared to return to practice. “He was able to handle the ball today and shoot,” said Lakers coach Byron Scott. “There’s still no contact. Hopefully next week sometime he’ll be able to go through a full day of contact and scrimmaging and then we’ll go from there.” Here’s more from around the Pacific Division:
- The Lakers‘ Ed Davis can’t wait for the chance to prove himself against the Grizzlies Tuesday night in Memphis, Markazi tweets. “It’s a lot of motivation going back there because they gave up on me,” Davis said. “It’s a team I definitely want to get a win against.” Davis saw limited playing time during his season and a half in Memphis. He joined the Lakers as a free agent in July on a contract that pays him $981,084 this season with a player option for more than $1.1MM in 2015/16.
- Steve Kerr, the first-year head coach of the Warriors, told Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic that he looked to a former teammate for inspiration. Kerr’s role model was Jeff Hornacek, who led the surprising Suns to a 48-34 record last season as a rookie coach. Kerr and Hornacek played together on the 1988/89 Suns. “I looked at Jeff and the job he did last year and the success he had, and I drew inspiration from that,” Kerr said. “I still watch him and watch his team with a lot of respect. They do a lot of really innovative things offensively, and they play hard.”
- There seems to be a sense of relief, rather than focus, among the Clippers, opines Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report. A mid-summer ownership change allowed the team to close the book on the Donald Sterling era, but Ding says the team is lacking its “Lob City energy” on offense and is slow in making rotations on defense.