Atlantic Rumors: Knicks, Johnson, Brooks

While much of the attention across the NBA has been focused on the struggles of the Nets, they're not the only Atlantic Division team performing below expectations this year. The prevailing wisdom entering the season was that the Atlantic would be the league's toughest division, but entering tonight, only the Knicks had a winning record. Here's more from what might be called the NBA's most disappointing division so far.

  • The Knicks, who are at the 15-man roster limit, aren't in the market for another point guard in the wake of Raymond Felton's injurytweets Ian Begley of 
  • On Thursday, Avery Johnson thought he and Nets GM Billy King were going to talk about the team's plans for January 15th, when Kris Humphries becomes eligible to be dealt. Instead, King told Johnson he was fired, as Stefan Bondy recounts via Twitter.
  • It's unclear how long P.J. Carlesimo will remain interim coach of the Nets, but his presence likely means more minutes for MarShon Brooks, TNT's David Aldridge tweets. Brooks' name has come up as a trade candidate, and he was reportedly among the most disgruntled players in the team's locker room under Johnson.
  • Doc Rivers' ability to withstand a pair of sub-.500 seasons before the Celtics went after talent and won the title in 2008 skewed expectations for coaches in similar positions, like Mike D'Antoni with the Knicks and Avery Johnson with the Nets, opines Michael Lee of The Washington Post.
  • Speaking on's SportsNet Central, Chris Mannix of advocates a Pau Gasol deal for the Celtics. Boston has had interest in the Lakers big man in the past, but appears to have cooled on him since.

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