When we talk about Oklahoma Sooners point guard Trae Young, we point to his Steph Curry-like range, ability to pull up in the blink of an eye and his underrated passing ability. Defense is absent from that conversation, not because it isn’t a strength, but because his explosive offense made it somewhat of a moot point as the 2017-2018 college hoops season went along.
This summer, though, as a potential top-five pick in July’s NBA Draft, Young knows his defensive prowess is going to be put to the test immediately. So at his pro day on Wednesday, Young did something unique: he decided to show scouts his one-on-one defense instead of focusing solely on his offense.
It’s a smart play by Young. Questions about his size and ability to defend will be the main criticisms of him as he prepares to play at the next level, so showcasing his defensive skills at his pro day displays both his improvement on that end and signals its importance. Whether or not it affects his draft position remains to be seen, but Young has certainly made his pro day stand out.