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Robinson, Young look to make most of two-way contracts

July 18, 2017
Over the past month, the Wizards have solidified their roster for the 2017-18 season. It started with the trade for Tim Frazier the week of the NBA Draft, followed by signing veteran free agents Mike Scott and Jodie Meeks and re-signing Otto Porter Jr. 

Within that timeframe, the Wizards also signed undrafted free agents Devin Robinson and Mike Young to two-way contracts. The 2017-18 season will mark the first year NBA two-way contracts will be implemented. NBA teams are allowed to have up to two players under two-way contracts who will spend the bulk of the season in the NBA G League and not more than 45 days with their NBA team. Two-way players are paid a corresponding daily amount based on the number of days they play in each league. Only players with four-or-fewer years of NBA experience are able to sign two-way contracts, which can be for either one or two seasons. 

The addition of two-way contracts will essentially grow NBA rosters from 15 to 17 spots, though those additional spots have obvious restrictions and two-way players will spend limited time with their NBA teams during the G League season. Still, adding two-way contracts emphasizes the efforts to grow the G League into a formidable minor league system. For those undrafted or looking for another chance to make it in the NBA, two-way contracts give players a a clear opportunity than a 10-day contract and a consistent agreement overall. 

The Wizards will take full advantage of two-way contracts when Washington's G League team begins play in the 2018-19 season, but here's a closer look at Devin Robinson and Mike Young. 

Devin Robinson spent three seasons at Florida before declaring for the NBA Draft. As a junior, the 6-8, 200-pound forward averaged 11.1 points and a team-leading 6.1 rebounds, while shooting .475 from the field and .391 from three-point range, helping Florida reach the Elite Eight for the first time since 2014. For his career, he averaged 8.9 points and 4.9 rebounds, while appearing in every game (105) for the Gators. 

In the Wizards' five Summer League games, Robinson averaged 3.4 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks in 15.6 minutes per game. He clearly made an impact defensively and had some highlight reel worthy dunks and blocks during his appearances. Robinson projects as a taller '3-and-D' player who could also become a stretch-four with more muscle.

Robinson has of course talked to fellow former Florida Gator Bradley Beal about playing in Summer League and in the Wizards' system.

"He just told me to go out there and play hard," Robinson said Beal told him. "Us being from Florida, he played under Coach Donovan. We know what to expect when it comes to this game."

Robinson, who was projected to be a top 40 pick in the NBA Draft but went undrafted, is focused on improving his game as much as possible over the summer and into next season.

"Three-point shooting [is] definitely a focal point right now," Robinson said. "Trying to get to a '3-and-D' player for the next level. And the coaching staff is telling me to work on my ball-handling and decision-making."

Mike Young, a 6-9, 235-pound forward, went undrafted out of the University of Pittsburgh, where he averaged 19.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.7 assists. He was named to theA ll-Atlantic Coast Conference Third Team in both 2016 and 2017 and finished his collegiate career ranked seventh in school history in scoring (1,835). 

In Summer League, Young averaged 9.4 points and 3.8 rebounds in 22.0 minutes per game in the Wizards' five games. With impressive size and the ability to guard multiple positions, Young has impressed the Wizards on and off the court. The team believes he can become a valuable wing player and hope his offensive game continues to grow. 

"I felt like Washington was the best fit," Young said of joining the Wizards. "Washington was one of the first few workouts I had scheduled. Everybody knew me, everybody was great. Everybody tried to help me as best as they could, and made me feel real comfortable."

Both Robinson and Young may not see too much time with the Wizards in the 2017-18 season, but they're both players to keep tabs on in the G League next season and moving forward.