Atlanta Hawks’ point guard Trae Young is reportedly looking to build upon his sensational rookie season by training with future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant.
According to The Athletic’s Chris Kirschner, Young has plans to link up with Kobe in California later this month, following the Team USA training camp which wraps up on Wednesday. The two will reportedly focus on Trae’s mid-range shooting.
“The plan is for Young, after he’s finished with his Team USA training camp obligations at the start of August, to travel to Newport Beach, Calif., before he has to report back to Atlanta on Aug. 19 and work on his midrange game with Kobe Bryant. Last summer, Bryant worked with Boston’s Jayson Tatum before the start of his sophomore season. Twenty-two percent of Tatum’s shot attempts this past season were considered long 2-point shots, ranking him in the 95th percentile.”
In his rookie season, Young shot 32.4% from three, while shooting just 31.6% from mid-range, according to NBA.com. He averaged 19.1 points and 8.1 assists in 81 games, and was a finalist for the Rookie of the Year award.
Per The Athletic:
A typical workout for Young with [personal on-court trainer Alex] Bazzell consists of a lot of ball-screen work, isolation looks and touch finishes (runners and floaters) around the rim. The biggest addition Young has been adding to his repertoire this offseason has been a midrange game. Young and Bazzell have taken parts of what make Chris Paul, Kyrie Irving and Young’s favorite player, Steve Nash, so successful and have applied elements of their midrange game to his.
“We have talked a lot about keeping the defense honest,” Bazzell said. “Him being able to stretch the floor from 30 to 35 feet obviously makes it tough for defenses, and his quickness to get to the rim adds another element, but now we need to prepare for when teams try to take things away. The goal is for the Hawks to make the playoffs and in the next two to three years to make a run in the playoffs. I told him that the level of intensity on defense in the playoffs isn’t going to allow him to get to the rim or shoot 3s with ease. It’s just not how it works, so he has to add to his game.”
The sharpshooting guard has also been grinding away in the weight room this summer. According to Kirschner, Young has already put on 12-16 pounds of muscle this offseason.