Seth Meyers Rips Nets at ESPYs

Seth Meyers took a shot last night at the Nets at the ESPYs.  Nets fans are already complaining about the joke, and rightfully so.  Meyers claimed that Kim Kardashian is marrying Kris Humphries because she’s tired of dating professional athletes, inferring that the Nets are some sort of pathetic franchise that has been irrelevant forever.  Either Meyers started watching basketball in 2007, or he was completely ignoring reality.

For those wondering, Meyers is a Red Sox, Celtics, and Steelers fan.  Talk about not knowing how to lose.  That alone deprives him the right to make any joke about any team.  The worst fans in the world are those who bandwagon teams and then proceed to make fun of inferior teams.

Anyway, the Nets have made the playoffs six out of the last ten years, something the majority of the league hasn’t done.  They’ve also won nine playoff series last decade, something any team would sign up for.  I don’t get Meyers’ joke about the ESPYS “not having any Nets for the past 15 years.”  That makes no sense because they’ve been an extremely relevant franchise over that time period.

Meyers’ Celtics haven’t even been that better of a franchise than the Nets have been over the past two decades.  Since 1991, the Celtics have made the playoffs 10 times.  The Nets have made it 9 times.  In head-to-head playoff matchups, the Nets are 2-0 against the Celtics.  The Nets were 8-2 in the games in those two series.  Sure, the Celtics won it all in 2008, but they’ve only been to the Finals a total of two times since 1987.  The Nets have also been to the Finals two times in that time period.

It’s time for all Nets jokes to stop.  The Nets franchise was very successful over the last decade, and they have a very bright future ahead.  Next year, the Nets may have the best arena in all of professional sports.  Not only that, but they have one superstar in place and could be adding another very shortly.

Seth Meyers needs a history lesson on the Nets.

Daily Briefing: July 7, 2011 (Nets Edition)

With the media spending so much attention the Knicks recently, it seems as if the Nets have been forgotten.  But with a new arena coming in 2012 and rumors of Dwight Howard wanting to leave Orlando, the Nets certainly have a very bright future.  With Deron Williams likely to re-sign with the team, the Nets are going to be major players in free agency during the next few years.  Although they have a few bad contracts, the team still has plenty of cap flexibility.  Combine that with an owner willing to do anything to win, and you could have a special team in Brooklyn in the near future.

– Earlier today Deron Williams made news by apparently signing with a Turkish team.  D-Will would obviously only play with this team if the lockout dragged onto into the NBA season, but it’s significant news nonetheless.

– These types of moves are important because they put pressure on the owners to get a deal done.  No one wants to see their star player get hurt playing overseas.

– The Nets apparently prefer re-signing Kris Humphries rather than signing Nene.  It’s hard to argue with that logic.  Humphries will likely cost less and already has a year under Avery Johnson.  Him and Brook Lopez are a very potent frontcourt duo.  There’s no reason to break that up to bring in a guy who is more of a center than a power forward.

– Speaking of the center position, there will be a battle for minutes there.  Brook Lopez is obviously the starter, but who will get the remaining minutes?  After a disappointing first season in New Jersey, Johan Petro is on the hot seat.  The Nets probably won’t be able to move his contract, but it’s worth a shot.  He only has two-years and a little more than $6 million left on his deal.  It’s not exactly an albatross contract, but I believe Petro is one of the worst players in the league.  The signing (along with the Outlaw’s ridiculous deal) continues to baffle me to this day.

– With all of that said, Jordan Williams should be able to compete for backup minutes at center.  He’s a rebounding machine that could serve as a solid role player for the Nets in the upcoming season.  It’s not going to take much to be better than Petro.

– As I mentioned before, Travis Outlaw’s contract is ridiculous.  He’s not a terrible player, but he’s not worth anywhere near $7 million per year for the next four years.  The Nets have to ship him to another team if they want to be able to make a huge impact in free agency the next few years.  They’ll have enough money for Dwight Howard regardless, but Outlaw may prevent the Nets from adding another piece to the championship puzzle.

– So where else do the Nets look for free agency help?  I say the Nets should look to acquire quality players at the wing positions.  Shooting guard and small forward are two major positions of concern for the Nets.  Even with Marshon Brooks, the Nets don’t have enough firepower at two-guard.  Billy King has to bring Sasha Vujacic back and then look for even another scorer.

– As for the three, Travis Outlaw and Damion James just aren’t enough.  Outlaw showed this year that he is simply a mediocre player who could fit in somewhere off the bench.  He’s not a starter in this league.  As for James, he can be a good player, but he’s proved nothing yet after an injury-filled 2010-2011.

It’s great to have an all-star point guard, but there’s no point in having him if he has no one to pass to.  The Nets have to explore improving every area of their team during this offseason.  With the right pieces, this team could definitely make a push for the playoffs.

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The new arena is coming, but there's a season for the Nets to play first.

Nets Make a Trade, Get Marshon Brooks

With the 27th pick of the 2011 NBA Draft, the New Jersey Nets selected JaJuan Johnson, but the Nets quickly dealt him to the Boston Celtics along with a future 2nd round pick for Marshon Brooks, who was selected by Boston with the 25th overall pick.

Brooks’s playing style is often compared to that of Kobe Bryant’s.  He was the second leading scorer in all of the NCAA last season.  This was a great move by the Nets to trade for Brooks.

UPDATE: In the second round, the Nets took Maryland’s C Jordan Williams with the #36 pick and acquired the #31 pick, which they used to select SG/SF Bojan Bogdanovic.  Both players have very high ceilings.  Either one could have been a top-15 pick according to some experts.


2011 NBA Draft Instant Analysis

Stay here throughout the night for instant updates and analysis.  The draft will be held at 7:00 live from the Prudential Center.  The Knicks pick 17th and the Nets pick 27th and 36th.  With the possibility of both teams moving up and down, it should be an interesting night.  The Knicks have been rumored to want to move up to select someone like Jimmer Fredette in the top-15.  On the other side of the Hudson, Billy King has a history of making multiple trades during draft night.

– (5:00) The Cavaliers are expected to take PG Kyrie Irving #1 overall and Lithuanian big man Jonas Valanciunas #4 overall.

– (5:30) The Bucks, Kings and Bobcats have agreed to a three-way trade, sources have confirmed.

– (6:10) The Atlanta Hawks are attempting to acquire the second overall pick to draft Enes Kanter, dangling Josh Smith in trade discussions.

– (6:25) The Warriors, Lakers, and Bulls are discussing a blockbuster trade.  Monta Ellis, Lamar Odom, and Joakim Noah would be involved.

– (7:15) According to Chad Ford, the Raptors will take Bismack Biyombo.  No surprise there.  According to Chris Mannix, the Wolves are contemplating trading the #2 overall pick for Monta Ellis.

– (7:30) Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports says the Blazers and Nuggets are seriously talking about a swapping Raymond Felton and Andre Miller.  They would also swap first round picks in the same deal.

– (7:40) The Cavs pick Irving #1 overall.

– (7:45) The Wolves pick Derrick Williams #2 overall.  I doubt he’ll stay with the Timberwolves the rest of the night.

– (7:50) The Jazz take Enes Kanter. This seems to me that they have their hopes on taking Jimmer with their 12th pick.

– (7:56) Cavs take Texas forward Tristan Thompson with the 4th pick. Hes raw offensively bit of a reach in my opinion.

– (7:59) Andy Katz reports that the Wolves intend to keep Derrick Williams.

– (8:07) Tristan Thomspon, Jonas Valanciunas, and Jan Vesley go 4-6.

– (8:13) Bismack Biyombo will go 7th to the Bobcats.

– (8:17) Brandon Knight finally goes 8th overall to the Pistons.

– (8:27) End the speculation. Kemba Walker goes 9th overall. He won’t be a Knick.

– (8:29) Jimmer Fredette goes to the Bucks. Certainly disappointing for Knicks fans.

– (8:35) Klay Thompson goes to Golden State. As a Knicks fan I’m praying for Alec Burks to fall but he should go shortly.

– (8:41) Burks just went. Chris Singleton is the only hope for the Knicks right now. But I know the organization will find a way to screw this up no matter who is there at 17th overall.

– (9:02) One more pick (Philly) until the Knicks pick. Singleton, Brooks, Faried, Vucevic, Shumpert still on the board.

– (9:10) The Knicks pick Iman Shumpert.

– (9:15) The Spurs have acquired the draft rights to Kawhi Leonard from the Pacers in exchange for George Hill.

– (10:02) The Nets draft Marshon Brooks following a trade from the Celtics.  Great pick.  I love it.

– (10:03) Jonny Flynn and Montejunas are taking their talents to Houston in a trade with the Wolves.  That means Flynn won’t be a Knick.

– (10:13) Rudy Fernandez is now a Maverick after trading their 26th pick to Portland.

– (10:40) – Andre Miller is going to Denver and Raymond Felton is going to Portland.  This completes the Rudy Fernandez trade.

– (10:41) The Nets select Jordan Williams with their 36th overall pick.

– (10:53) The Nets took Maryland’s Jordan Williams with the No. 36 pick and will hang onto him.  He’s not part of the Bogdanovic acquisition.

– (11:17) The Knicks selected Josh Harrelson with the 45th pick, which they bought from New Orleans.

– (11:19) After some confusion, we can confirm the Nets did buy/trade for the pick used to select swingman Bojan Bogdanovic.  Sorry for the confusion, ESPN has really been unclear on everything tonight.  That was originally the 31st overall pick.  Bogdanovic has buyout issues, but he’s a great talent.  If he played at an elite college, he may have been a lottery pick.

Thanks to Mike K. for his contributions tonight.

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Josh Smith Would Like to Play for the Nets

Josh Smith is apparently on the trade market.  The Hawks are curious to see what they could get in return for Smith.   Smith said that he would prefer to play for the Celtics, Nets, Magic, or Rockets.  Smith is a good friend of Dwight Howard’s so it would make sense for the Nets and Magic to show interest in acquiring Smith.

For the Nets this off-season is all about acquiring players to put around Deron Williams.  The Nets need to prove to Williams that they trying to put a winning product on the court.  Acquiring a guy like Josh Smith would send a good signal to Deron.  Smith is only 25 years old, and he has a great combination of offensive and defensive skills.  Acquiring Smith may also give the Nets an edge in the Dwight Howard sweepstakes.  If Howard and Smith are truly as great of friends as the above article makes them out to be, Howard may pressure the Magic to deal him to the Nets so he could play with Smith and Williams.

Could Smith and Howard join Deron Williams in New Jersey and eventually in Brooklyn?

Dwight Howard Seen with Nets…

… Dancers.

Yeah, not what you were expecting.  Don’t look into this too much, but realize that Howard to the Nets is a serious possibility.  Along with the Knicks and Lakers, the Nets would present the best opportunity for Howard.  Dwight would be the man in Brooklyn, something he wouldn’t have anywhere else.  Deron Williams would be there, but Howard would be the main superstar.  He could be what Jason Kidd was for the Nets in the 2000s.

Also, the Nets would be pretty damn good with him.  They’d have Humphries and Deron Williams, and could likely attract some valuable swingmen to fill out the roster.  It’s going to be exciting to see the Nets good again.  I have a feeling they may make the playoffs as soon as next season if they have a decent offseason, with or without Dwight Howard.  But to take that next step, they’re going to need to get that second superstar.  I have a feeling Howard may be that guy.

I’ve said it all along, and I’ll say it again.  Dwight Howard and Deron Williams would be a better duo than Stat and Melo.  If the Knicks add a third star, they’ll obviously have a better core than the Nets.  But if the Nets were to acquire Dwight tomorrow, they may just be better than the Knicks right now.  I’ve always said if I were to start a team tomorrow and had to pick one player to be my franchise guy, it would be Dwight Howard.  “D12” is a once-in-a-generation talent at center, which in my opinion is the NBA’s premium position.

Nets to Trade Up for Derrick Williams?

The Bleacher Report claims that the Timberwolves could trade the second overall pick to the Nets.

Minnesota will most likely trade the pick away and a likely suitor is the New Jersey Nets.  

The Nets don’t have a first round pick in this year’s draft after they traded it away for Deron Williams.  New Jersey desperately needs a small and power forward.  They can instantly start Williams in whichever spot they prefer.

He averaged 19.5 points and 8.5 rebounds a game last year at Arizona.  Many consider his three point shot a weakness, but he shot 57 percent from behind the arc for the season.

At 6’8″, 240 pounds, you can call him a tweener, or you can call him a match-up problem.  He’s going to be too big for wings to guard in the post and too quick for bigs to guard on the perimeter.

Minnesota could ask for a package of a future first round pick plus one or two players like Jordan Farmar and Damien James in return.

First of all, the article is wrong.  The Nets do have a first round pick this year.  They could trade that, their second round, along with future picks and some players to move up.  I’d really support this move.   All signs show Williams could become a great player in this league.  He could be the long-term fit at SF.  If the Nets re-sign Humphries, then SG is the only position of concern.  This is the move we could look back on as the one that changed the Nets franchise forever.  I’m 100% on board with this, although the chance of it happening is slim.

Could we see a Deron Williams to Derrick Williams connection in Newark next season?