Things are so bad for the Nets that Jay-Z doesn’t want to be an owner of the team anymore. Ok, he sold his stake because of Roc Nation Sports, a sports agency firm he started, which would have been a conflict of interest, but still…Things are so bad that my brother-in-law, who was born and raised on 16th Avenue, still roots for the Knicks. Think about that for a sec. I get it, though. It’s a franchise that used to reside in New Jersey. Ewwwwwww. That’s where New Yorkers used to dump their garbage. It’s a franchise that gave up three first round picks, as well as the right to swap another, for a 38-year-old Kevin Garnett and a 36-year-old Paul Pierce. That trade was so ridiculous that I can’t even come up with an analogy. If I tried to replicate that trade in a videogame, it wouldn’t go through, even if I selected the override trade option. It’s a franchise that acquired Linsanity, but without the sanity. But things are looking up. General Manager Sean Marks has come in and done some competent things. Hopefully he brings it back Crooklyn Style…
2016 record: 20-62 (worst record in all the land)
- D’Angelo Russell via trade
- Timofey Mozgov via trade
- Jarrett Allen via draft
- DeMarre Carroll via trade
- Allen Crabbe via free agency
- Brook Lopez via trade
First year coach, Kenny Atkinson, led? coached? guided? failed? the Nets to 20 wins. He got his team to play at the fastest pace in the NBA last year. I don’t see that changing much in 2017. It’s going to be interesting to see what he does with his rotations, as no player averaged over 30 minutes per game last season. If he was employing some Arkansas Razorbacks “40 minutes of hell” defense, I’d understand. My five, soon to be six year old son will start playing basketball soon. During the games, time will be stopped every five minutes so that mass substitutions can take place. This will allow every kid to get equal playing time. Coach Atkinson, you’re in the NBA.
PG – Jeremy Lin ended up playing only 36 games last season due to injuries. When he did play, he had a usage rate of over 26% and flirted with a few triple-dubs. Unfortunately, Isaiah Whitehead and Spencer Dinwiddie got over 20 minutes a game each. If Lin is healthy and gets minutes, he’s in a prime situation for fantasy goodness. Did Coach hold his minutes down because of injury or because of other reasons? Me thinks Whitehead and Dinwiddie still get run to cap the upside for Lin.
I’ve never been a huge Russell fan, but if he gets the minutes, he’s going to produce. The situation is that good.
SF – You can hate on the hair and/or the contract for Allen Crabbe, but you can’t deny that the boy can shoot. 44% from three-land last season, which was third-best in the NBA. As for the rest of his game, well I think this quote sums it up. “He very rarely did anything other than shoot open shots or dribble in a straight line toward the hoop. Passing? ha. Rebounding? lol.” He should fit right in for the Nets.
Coach Atkinson was on the staff in Atlanta when DeMarre Carroll was there. “He helped with my shot and even my slashing, my timing of understanding when to slash and when to play on the move. Me being in a system where the coach gets me and now I can do what I do, play defense and shoot the three ball, I feel like this is the best environment for me.” Damn it. I moved up Crabbe in my rankings, but I think it would be prudent to move him back down. Carroll is going to play and nuke any upside Crabbe may have had.
Joe Harris is also on the roster…for now. He played in 52 games and started 11 last season. He got 21.9 minutes per game. This guy…
Yeah, I definitely have to move Crabbe down.
PF – I like Rondae Hollis-Jefferson. He can do it all, except shoot consistently from the perimeter. He’s super young (22 years old) with potential and seems to have the inside track to starting. With that said, Carroll can play some four and Trevor Booker is going to be in the mix.
C – Sooner, rather than later, it’s going to be the Jarrett Allen show. As a Lakers fan, I can confirm that Timofey Mozgov does indeed suck. Granted, he only played a handful of minutes, but that was a handful too many. Quincy Acy played 15.9 minutes per game last season. Need I say more? Anyways, Allen is raw but he’s athletic and could thrive in the up-tempo style. The Nets are going to be bad, so the kids are going to get run. It’s just a question of how much.