There is no other way around it, Atlanta Hawks point guard Trae Young is a dominant force offensively. Young finished his fourth NBA season as the league leader in total points and total assists, the first player to do so since Tiny Archibald. His star power is the reason why the Hawks’ aggressive pursuit of an upgraded roster this offseason.
Some consider the Hawks’ trade for Dejounte Murray the best move of the summer. And the Hawks themselves sound excited about the potential of a Murray-Trae Young combo in the backcourt.
Of course, there have also been detractors of the move both because of the unprotected draft picks the Hawks sent and the fit between Murray and Young.
But Young’s dominance gives the Hawks a higher floor than most teams.
Trae Young has been dominant for the Atlanta Hawks and is still getting better
Young has had a pretty busy offseason. As if preparing for the NBA season by getting in some extra floor time with Murray and teammate John Collins (twice!) was not enough, Young became a father for the first time. That is a lot of responsibility. For what it’s worth, there have been players who have gone on incredible runs following the birth of their child.
If that trend holds for Young, he will undoubtedly be making even more history than he did last season en route to a third-team All-NBA selection.
Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley released his list of the NBA’s most dominant players.
Young finished third among point guards beating out several high-profile players such as Ja Morant and Chris Paul.
“Some may gripe that Young’s defense is too leaky to justify such a prominent placement, but this ranking simply points to how absurdly elite his offense is. His combined contributions as a scorer and table-setter—never mind as a deep-range net-shredder—are nearly unrivaled.”
Buckley raises an interesting point. Critics who fret over Young’s defense (or the number of deep-range threes) often overlook his ability to get to the cup almost at will.
More importantly, it’s hard to discount his passing ability after he led the NBA in total assists.
“He’s already just the second player ever to average at least 25 points and nine assists three different times. Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson, basketball’s king of the overstuffed stat sheet, is the other.”
As Buckley continues, Young is essentially a system all to himself. Bringing in Murray should only help bring that out.
“Young essentially buys his team a top-10 offense and gives it best-in-the-league potential. He is hyper-efficient as it is—only Nikola Jokic and Giannis Antetokounmpo (winners of the last four MVP awards) tallied more offensive win shares this past season—but don’t be surprised if Young finds an even higher gear now that he’ll have a second shot-creator, Dejounte Murray, around to help pilot the offense.”
Head coach Nate McMillan has been insistent that he won’t take the ball out of Young’s hands completely. But he did tell the guard Murray’s addition would mean he has to play off of the ball a lot more.
There have been calls for Young to mimic the off-ball movement of Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry.
This is a major step in that direction.
Young is already being considered dominant and the Hawks believe they have just made a move that will make him even better. We could see his name higher up on next year’s iteration of Buckley’s list.