When a team is going through a rebuilding process, there is a lot to think about. The state of the current roster, the team payroll, future draft picks, young players, and non-producers getting paid big money are all aspects teams must consider as they enter the rebuilding stage.
As most people know, the Brooklyn Nets squad this year is not good. They are 8-24, and currently sit in the 15th seed in the weak Eastern Conference. Certainly something would have to drastically change for the Nets to even come close to making the playoffs.
Bojan Bogdanovic. The Nets are only paying the 27-year-old approximately 3.5 million dollars this year to score 14.3 points per game. Although he is not a star shooting guard, he is a quality player that the Nets need to make a part of their future.
— NBA Yugobasket (@NbaYugobasket) December 27, 2016
The current payroll situation. The Nets have the lowest payroll in the NBA. Although they don’t have tons of money like some professional teams like the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Nets are in great financial shape. Brook Lopez currently takes up over one fourth of the entire team’s contracts. Brooklyn could throw money around in free agency as well as to young players coming out of the draft.
Brook Lopez’ stat line. This year, Brook is averaging over 20 points per game and almost 3 assists per game, both well above his career average. Although his rebounding is down a bit from past years, he makes up for it in other areas. Not only are his points per game and assists per game up, but he is also shooting very well from the free throw line and slightly better from three-point range. Lopez is having a good year.
Jeremy Lin and his salary. Lin is set to make about 36 million dollars over the next three years. This would not be bad if he weren’t averaging such modest numbers. Ever since Lin broke out as a great young player, he has cooled down significantly. This year he is averaging 14 points and 6 assists. These statistics are not awful, but they are certainly not good enough for a starting point guard receiving 12 million dollars a year. Oh, and he just got injured the day after Christmas.
The draft situation. The Nets only have a second-round draft pick this year, and it doesn’t get much better in the near future. Brooklyn traded away both this year’s first rounder and 2018’s first round draft pick to Boston in the deal where they received Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.
The young players on the team are not going to be all-stars. None of them are making much influence in games. The two best younger players are Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Isaiah Whitehead. They are averaging 7.9 and 6.7 points per game, respectively.
The current state of the roster in general. The Nets have four players averaging double digit points per game. Ever heard of Sean Kilpatrick? Neither had most of the NBA until recently. Sean averages 15.5 points per game at the shooting guard position. Sadly, this is also the position that Bojan Bogdanovic plays, making it harder to have both out on the court at the same time.
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) December 31, 2016
Brooklyn should trade Brook Lopez. He is paid over 20 million per year, and if the Nets could get somebody to take his contract away, they would almost have too much money to work with. The Nets could get a couple first round picks for Lopez, and get even get some of his salary eaten.
Brooklyn needs to get rid of Jeremy Lin and draft a young point guard to take his place. Lin has not played well enough to earn the money he has been getting since he left the New York Knicks.
If the Nets can buy draft picks and trade for them, they could have a good team in a couple of years. They could pay one very solid player a max contract next summer, and still have lots of money to use towards younger players.
The rebuilding process has not worked thus far. It’s time for the Nets to take a detour.