Brook Lopez’s injured foot has progressed enough to allow him to participate in basketball-related activites (Haynes, July 12).
Lopez isn’t allowed contact yet, but is “moving pretty well,” according to the report.
Lopez underwent successful surgery on his broken right foot in early January (SNY Nets, January 4).
In addition to repairing his fractured fifth metatarsal, Lopez also underwent a procedure known as a “first metatarsal osteotomy” in his right foot. That osteotomy procedure essentially repositions a bone in the foot to help stabilize the foot, decrease stress, and help it bear weight more evenly. It’s a procedure designed to decrease the likelihood of re-injury, and it has been credited with saving the career of former Cavs center Zydrunas Ilgauskas.
Lopez really is the forgotten man in Brooklyn. The Nets went on their big run without him, Jason Kidd wanted to move him for pittance because he didn’t think he could play in his system, and he hasn’t stepped foot (no pun intended) on an NBA floor since December. But make no mistake, Lopez is integral to the Nets’ 2014-15 success. We can’t forget just how dominant Brook can be when healthy, and how much his defense improved before going down with the second season-ended injury of his career. I know the health is a huge qualifier for him, but Brooklyn has a presence in the middle that most teams would kill to have. If Lopez can come back at anywhere close to his full potential, the Nets will be formidable in the East.
Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett were joined at the hip when the Nets made the trade with Boston last summer. That’s not the case anymore as Pierce leaving as a free agebnt to the Washington Wizards won’t affect Garnett’s decision to comeback for a 2oth season.
Garnett has one more year left on his deal and league sources told the New York Post that the former MVP is leaning towards returning to the Nets (Bontemps, July 13).
The Nets had a chance to match the 2-year mid-level exception deal that Pierce signed with the Wizards that will pay him a total of approximately $10 million. The Nets, who have a deep luxury tax bill, would have been taxed $20 million if it had kept Pierce on the roster. The Nets spent $193 mlilion on payroll and luxury tax last season.
Paul Pierce’s time with the Brooklyn Nets appears to be over.
The free agent forward has reached an agreement to join the Washington Wizards per ESPN (Stein July 13).
Pierce will sign a 2-year deal with a second year player option for approximately $11 million using the mid-level exception. Pierce had considered joining the Clippers and reuniting with Doc Rivers, but the Nets were reluctant to engage in a sign-and-trade.
Pierce averaged 13.5 points for the Nets after a trade from Boston last summer playing 75 games with 68 starts. The Wizards have a big hole at small forward after Trevor Ariza signed a deal to move to the Rockets on Saturday.
Ummm…okay? This really came out of nowhere, but supposedly Pierce desperately wanted to play with John Wall and Bradley Beal. Without question, this makes Washington a dangerous team, but where does this leave Brooklyn? Well, certainly with a hole at forward, one that will have to be filled primarily by what the have. The Nets don’t have a lot of room to maneuver here, and Pierce walking away was a worst case scenario. This team is going to look and feel a lot different when they take the floor in 2014-15, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but there will definitely be question marks. It’s up to Billy King to find some answers here.
Nets coach Lionel Hollins isn’t concerned about what LeBron James heading back to Cleveland means for the Nets.
He also isn’t worried about the Nets’ role in such a move. The three-way trade between the Celtics, Nets and Cavaliers that brought Jarrett Jack to Brooklyn opened up enough cap space for the Cavaliers to sign James.
Hollins is worried about Brooklyn only (Bontemps, July 11).
“From my perspective, it’s about helping Brooklyn get better, and Jarrett Jack is a nice addition for us,” Hollins told the New York Post. “What Cleveland did afterwards, and LeBron, that’s between them.”
The Nets also have no updates on free agent forward Paul Pierce, who is considering signing with the Clippers and reuniting with Doc Rivers.
Nets guard Jarrett Jack said Thursday over a conference call that he is “tremendously excited” to be coming to Brooklyn and play with players he’s admired for a long time (Newsday, July 10).
Jack was acquired in a three-team trade with the Cavaliers and Celtics.
“I’m tremendously excited because a lot of guys I have admired from afar, I actually get to be teammates with now,” Jack said Thursday. “I think that’s the most intriguing part.
Jack, who will replace Shaun Livingston, is looking forward to the opportunity to make an impact with his new team.
“But I definitely think we have the capability to do some damage in the East and be the force that people expected Brooklyn to be last year.”
Although his exact role with the Nets is uncertain, the 6-3 guard is confident in his ability to find his niche on the team.
“I think I can be someone who can relieve Deron at times with the ballhandling responsibilities,” Jack said. “Pushing the tempo, trying to create opportunities for myself or for my teammates.”
Newly-acquired point guard Jarrett Jack talks about joining the Brooklyn Nets and his feelings on the upcoming season.
Nets forward and unrestricted free agent Paul Pierce, who is currently playing in the World Series of Poker Main Event, spoke Thursday with PokerNews Live about his future in the NBA (ESPN, July 10).
When asked about where LeBron James might end up, Pierce admitted he “doesn’t even know where [he's] going,” but is hopeful he will stay in Brooklyn.
“I had a great time in Brooklyn,” said Pierce. “Even though we started off slow, we turned it around. Unfortunately we didn’t get to our ultimate goal, but I enjoyed the experience and who knows where I’ll be next year.”
While the Nets are currently in negotiations with Pierce, he hopes to be paid in the $9-10 million range, even though the team would like to pay him in the $6-8 million range.
Although Pierce aims to stay in Brooklyn, the Los Angeles Clippers could be an enticing destination for him given that it’s his home town and he won a championship with Clippers coach Doc Rivers in Boston.
“Doc has given me a call. Right now, it’s free agency so you can talk to teams, so I’ve talked to Doc,” Pierce said. “Right now, I think everybody’s waiting to see what LeBron and [Carmelo Anthony] do before all the chips fall into place, and then you’ll see a lot more guys signing.”
The Nets have confirmed that they have officially retired the BrooklynKnight as their mascot.
A Nets source told NetsDaily that the club “had to face reality that he didn’t work out.” (July 10)
Zach Lowe of Grantland summed up the Knight’s failure is a must-read eulogy for Grantland:
“The Knight was a disaster, and that had nothing to do with the fellow who played him. He’s by all accounts a nice person who takes his job seriously, and the Nets did not put him in a position to succeed. Some teams are more permissive than others in allowing high-degree-of-difficulty tricks and fan interaction that pushes the envelope — aggressive ‘attacks’ on enemy fans, leering at women, pestering security guards and referees. The Nets have not been one of those teams. The Knight itself was the mangled result of an expensive consulting deal with Marvel and a breathless roll-out that heightened anticipation for a game-changing take on the mascot genre. Instead, we got a dude in a black spandex suit.”
Honestly, I will never forget the Knight making his debut. It was so…strange. I didn’t mind the name, because I’m a sucker for a good pun joke any day of the week. But wow, was the execution of the idea bad. More than that, it didn’t seem to fit anything that the Nets were trying to do as a brand. The Brooklyn Nets seemed to be everything cool and hip, and BrooklynKnight seemed like he should be at your cousin’s fifth birthday party. The Nets were happy with the performer who played the Knight, and that probably means we’ll get a revamped mascot at some point. In the meantime, I wonder if that Opening Night comic will ever be worth anything…
The Nets officially announced the trades to bring Jarrett Jack and Sergey Karasev to Brooklyn.
Brooklyn will send Marcus Thornton to Boston, as well as the draft rights to Ilkan Karaman, Christian Drejer and Edin Bavcic to Cleveland.
“Jarrett is a proven NBA veteran who will add versatility to our backcourt,” GM Billy King said in a statement. “The team had a need in that area and we are excited that we were able to secure Jarrett to fill that role. Sergey is a player who we have followed closely for several years. He is a versatile forward and will be a welcome addition to our roster.”
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The Nets and Paul Westphal have verbally agreed to terms to bring the NBA head coaching veteran as an assistant to Lionel Hollins (ESPN, July 10).
The 63-year-old has served as a head coach with the Phoenix Suns, Seattle SuperSonics and Sacramento Kings. Westphal is 318-279 in parts of 10 seasons as a head coach.
Westphal took the Suns to the NBA Finals in the 1992-93 season. He coached the Kings from 2009-12 before getting fired seven games into the 2011-12 season.