Nets Unable to Strike Deal as Trade Deadline Passes

Josh Newman, SNYNets.com

Billy_KingA $330 million overhaul of the roster and a late-December coaching change have brought the Nets to this point. At 33-22, the team is 11 games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 2005-06 season. They are very much in contention in the Atlantic Division and have started the post-All Star break stretch run with two straight wins.

Even still, the Nets wanted to paint themselves as players in the trade market with the trade deadline coming and going at 3 p.m. on Thursday afternoon. The problem with this brand new roster turned out to be that it doesn’t have nearly enough assets that trade deadline sellers would covet, at least right now.

A deal that would have sent Kris Humphries to the Charlotte Bobcats for Ben Gordon died late Wednesday evening with the Nets ultimately having no interest in a guard that doesn’t play much defense. Humphries, MarShon Brooks and a draft pick to the Milwaukee Bucks for Ersan Ilyasova never materialized, nor did that combination of players and assets heading to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Paul Pierce.

The Nets were also involved to the very end on a potential deal that would’ve netted them Atlanta Hawks forward soon-to-be free agent Josh Smith, the big prize of this year’s trade deadline. As with any other deal the Nets were involved in for anyone of note, Humphries, Brooks and a draft pick was not going to be enough.

Humphries, who re-signed with the Nets last summer for two years and $24 million after a career year in 2011-12, was and still is the Nets’ best trade chip. His semi-expiring contract will soon become an expiring deal this summer and beyond.

Brooks has shown flashes on the offensive end, but also the need to play better perimeter defense over his first one and a half seasons with the Nets. The former Providence College star is signed through the 2014-15 season with the Nets having already picked up the option on his rookie contract for just under $3 million.

Josh Newman is SNYNets.com’s Field Reporter. Follow him on Twitter for up to the minute news and banter on all things related to the Brooklyn Nets and the NBA