Trae Young downplays incident with coach Nate McMillan, mad that issue was made public
Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young on Monday.
Young missed the Hawks' win over the Denver Nuggets on Friday night after he and McMillan started feuding over his shoulder injury when Young didn't want to participate in the team's shootaround. Young, in favor of receiving treatment before deciding if he was going to play. McMillan, however, didn't like that and gave him an ultimatum. He could either come off the bench, or skip the game entirely.
McMillan called the incident a “miscommunication” on Sunday, and Young had similar comments on Monday. His biggest issue, apparently, is that the altercation was made public.
"It's hard for people who don't know the full situation to understand it," Young said. "Like I said, it's a private matter made public, which was unfortunate. If it stayed private it probably wouldn't have been as big of a deal. Like I said, it's unfortunate. My job and my goal is to win a championship, and that's all I'm focused on … When you're an outside guy like you are and you don't understand a private matter and private situation, you should probably stay on the outside.
"It's unfortunate that everybody has to understand and know a little bit of the details that went on inside. I mean, inside here we're all good. If you've got any more questions about that you can talk to somebody else about it. That's all I've got to say about it."
To be fair, it’s hard to keep a matter private when a player like Young just skips a game without much of an explanation. That’s going to be asked about, and it should be asked about.
But regardless, Young said things are “all good” now within the Hawks organization — even if he didn’t .
Young is set to return on Monday for the Hawks’ game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The team beat the Nuggets 117-110 without him, which was their second straight win. Young is averaging 27.8 points and 9.6 assists per game this season, and he’s in the first year of a five-year, $215 million deal with the Hawks.
McMillan is in his third season in Atlanta. Though this isn’t the first alleged altercation or issue between McMillan and Hawks players this season, his job is still reportedly safe. It’s still early in the season, after all.
If McMillan and his players — especially Young — keep butting heads, however, it could be a long year in Atlanta.