In a trade that shakes up the Eastern Conference, the Cleveland Cavaliers dealt point guard Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics on Tuesday for a package including point guard Isaiah Thomas, small forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic, and a 2018 first-round draft pick.
Boston refused to send that Brooklyn’s 2018 first round pick for Paul George to Indiana. Chicago wanted that pick for Jimmy Butler, but Boston wasn’t trying to hear it. Maybe that pick is losing value by the day, thanks to the confidence of the Brooklyn Nets and how they might not be that awful after all.
The Nets were the worst team in the NBA last year by four games, finishing just 20-62. When that painful season ended, Brooklyn GM Sean Marks took some dramatic steps to improve the roster.
D’Angelo Russell and Timofey Mozgov were acquired from the Lakers in a trade for Brook Lopez and the No. 27 pick in the draft. DeMarre Carroll was acquired from the Raptors for a trade exception. Allan Crabbe was acquired from the Trail Blazers for a trade exception.
Russell now becomes the new leading man in Brooklyn. Crabbe and Carroll are each useful 3-and-D style wings, even if both are considered to be overpaid. Mozgov is another player on a bad contract, but he can at least add veteran stability to the Brooklyn front court.
Add those new additions to a roster that already includes guard Jeremy Lin, young wings Caris LeVert, Sean Kilpatrick, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, and a solid veteran forward in Trevor Booker, and suddenly the Nets look OK.
The Brooklyn Nets have now become the new ” trust the process” team. Nets leadership , like the Obama administration, took over a mess of a situation and are trying to weather that storm. The main objective this season is to not finish in the bottom five of the league. On paper, I believe they can improve the team’s win total by 10-14 games. When a living legend, like Magic Johnson, calls you out and challenges your leadership skills, you become that much more motivated to prove him and the critics wrong.
The 2017-2018 Brooklyn Nets will be a band of misfits looking to find their way. Sorry Cavs fans, that first round pick will not be a top 3 or top 5 pick. The Nets really have nothing to lose and should have confidence to start their season. Let ESPN and Fox Sports tell you that the Nets will be the worst team in the league. I’m here to tell you they will be bad, not awful.
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