Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young and Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic will always be linked after the two players were traded for one another on draft night in 2018.
Both players had phenomenal rookie seasons for their respected teams as Doncic finished the 2018-19 season with averages of 21.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 6.0 assists, 1.1 steals, and 32.2 minutes over 72 games. Young’s rookie campaign wrapped up with marks of 19.1 points, 8.1 assists and 3.7 rebounds over 30.9 minutes in 81 games.
However, Doncic would be named the 2018-19 NBA Rookie of the Year. Young would finish as the runner up, and the two would be unanimously selected to the NBA All-Rookie First Team.
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Trae Young Felt Disrespected on Draft Night
The Hawks rising star, along with his teammate John Collins were recent guests on ‘The SWAG Shop‘ hosted by Grammy award-winning artist Killer Mike. During the episode, Young was asked to share his thoughts on how he felt after being traded on draft night.
Trae Young: “I saw a lot of video on draft night, the whole trade thing here and everything that went down.
Killer Mike: “How did it feel? You kind of alluded to it, but how did it feel, and how does it feel now?”
TY: “I just felt disrespected, I mean, at the beginning of it all, I just felt disrespected just from everything I did in college, that I felt like I had something to prove,” said Young.
“And it wasn’t necessarily anything personal with Luka, but to show people why Atlanta brought me here.”
KM: “What’s it been like adjusting to the program?”
TY: “I think after that first month is when I really started to get a flow of things. People say it was two halves of the season, and I disagree with that,” Young said.
Jason Kidd & TJ Kidd Weighed in on the Rookie of Year Race Last Season
Jason Kidd is no stranger to Rookie of the Year controversy. Like Young, he came on strong late during the 1994-95 season in Dallas, while Grant Hill was the frontrunner all season. The two ended up becoming co-Rookie of the Year that season. Back in March of 2019, Kidd was on ESPN’s The Jump and discussed the race between Doncic and Young.
“I feel like I am Trae Young. I came on late in my Rookie Year,” said Kidd. “Grant [Hill] had it sewed up, and he had it won, and I think Trae is playing at a high level, but Luka I think again for the season. We talk about the marathon, and Luka has done it from start to finish.”
Grant Hill averaged 19.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 5.0 assists for the Detroit Pistons during the 1994-95 season. Kidd averaged 11.7 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 7.7 assists for the Dallas Mavericks.
The day of the NBA Awards earlier this year, Heavy.com’s Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson spoke with Kidd’s son, TJ, and the two discussed the possibility of having another pair of co-Rookie of the Year winners.
“There’s been a lot of talk about there being Co-Rookie of the Year this year,” T.J. Kidd told Robinson.
“One of the last times that happened was with my dad and Grant Hill during the 1994-95 season. I think that of course, it would be cool to see it happen again. I think Luka and Trae are both phenomenal basketball players and will continue to be great as their careers progress. I think they both deserve the award. They both had phenomenal seasons for Dallas and Atlanta. They were a lot of fun to watch this past season. I’m excited to see how the voting goes.”
Robinson reported the feat has happened a few other times in the past as well. Dave Cowens and Geoff Petrie shared it for the 1970-71 season. Steve Francis and Elton Brand shared it during the 1999-00 season.
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