Southeast Notes: Young, Lowry, Jovic, Ball

Trae Young addressed a report that the Hawks might listen to offers for him in the offseason, saying he had more urgent matters to attend to — namely, Tuesday’s play-in game against Miami, Joe Vardon of The Athletic reports.

“Especially as the player in the moment, you can’t look at what’s gonna come on next year,” the Hawks’ star guard said. “After the game, if the game doesn’t go your way tonight, what’s gonna happen? Like, you can’t focus on things like that. That messes up your head and then you’re not ready to play so, me, I’m not worried about that. I’m gonna let my game play. After the season, whatever happens, happens.”

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic (video link), Young has developed a “solid” relationship with coach Quin Snyder but the Hawks “are continuing to monitor (his) day-to-day commitment and his habits on a day-to-day basis, on the floor and off the floor.” Atlanta’s front office wants to see if Young will become a better leader and Charania expects Young’s agent, Rich Paul, to have conversations with management this offseason about his future.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • Heat guard Kyle Lowry, who will be entering the final season of his three-year contract in 2023/24, isn’t sure if he’ll require left knee surgery this offseason, according to Anthony Chiang and Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. “I don’t know,” Lowry said. “We’ll get to that point when it’s there.” He has been limited to 55 games this season due primarily to left knee pain.
  • Heat rookie Nikola Jovic missed 37 games this season due to back issues and he told Chiang that he’s been battling back pain since last summer. “It’s something that started during the summer league,” Jovic said. “That’s when I first felt it. Then just through the season, it was hurting more and more. At one point, I just couldn’t play anymore. The back injury was bothering me even off the court. So I just couldn’t deal with it anymore.”
  • LaMelo Ball, who missed 46 games this season due to ankle ailments, said he’s happy with the Hornets, according to Steve Reed of The Associated Press“I love it here,” he said. “I can’t really tell the future. We’ll just see how it goes and go from there.” However, he doesn’t want to be on a lottery-bound team much longer. “The main thing is winning. Life if better when you win,” he said. Ball is eligible for an extension this offseason.
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