Basketball fans all over are taking notice of Oklahoma star freshman Trae Young, a point guard who currently averages a ridiculous 29.6 points and 10.7 assists just 12 games into his college career. Beyond the numbers, he's become a social media sensation with his quick release three-point shot and the ability to drain them from all over.
Wizards guard Bradley Beal, however, has been aware of Young for several years. Beal runs an AAU team out of St. Louis called 'Bradley Beal Elite' and the two have crossed paths before.
"I know Trae. He played on an AAU team that we used to coach against in Kansas City. So, I've known him for a while," Beal said, adding that he worked out with Young this past summer.
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Young, in fact, played on the same AAU team as Missouri freshman Michael Porter, Jr. Porter is expected to be a high draft pick in 2018, but his freshman season ended early due to a back injury.
Young is now drawing attention as a prodigious scorer. He is shooting 41.3 percent from three on 10.2 attempts per game, many of them from well beyond the NCAA's 20.9-feet three-point line.
Beal, of course, has seen it all before.
"He used to do the same thing to us, shoot from halfcourt," Beal said. "He pulls up from halfcourt and shoots with a ton of confidence."
It's easy to be reminded of a current NBA superstar when watching Young and Beal thinks the comparison is apt. Young looks like a, well, young version of Stephen Curry of the Warriors.
"He's special, man. He's definitely like a baby Steph," Beal said. "I'm a fan of his. I've always been a fan of his."
Young, like Curry, has the type of range that draws questions of whether the three-point line should be pushed back in college and/or the NBA. Beal is one of the NBA's best three-point shooters, but has no interest in a rule change.
"I hope not, man," he said. "The corner is already really small. You can't move it too much further back in the corner."