Nets coach Lionel Hollins offered a blunt assessment of point guard Deron Williams, telling Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork, “He’s not a franchise player anymore,” Hollins’ comments came a day after Brooklyn’s short playoff run ended with a Game 6 loss to the Hawks. Williams averaged 11.8 points and 5.5 assists in the series, while shooting just 39.1% from the floor. The veteran guard is under contract with Brooklyn for two more seasons, although he can opt out of the final year. The Nets owe him $21MM next year and $22.3MM in 2016/17.
There’s more news out of Brooklyn:
- It could be a summer of change for the Nets, according to Howard Megdal of USA Today. He notes that both Williams and Joe Johnson have been the subjects of trade rumors, while Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young can opt out of their current deals. Young said he wants to see what Lopez does before making a decision, Mazzeo tweets. Young confirmed that the Nets would like both players to return.
- Lopez tells Tim Bontemps of The New York Post that he hasn’t made up his mind about his future. The Nets’ center has one more year on his contract; he will make more than $16.7MM next season if he doesn’t opt out, but will become an unrestricted free agent for the first time if he does. “The season just ended,” Lopez said, “so I haven’t given it any thought.” Bontemps notes that Lopez had his best career stretch after the All-Star break, averaging 19.7 points, 9.2 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game while shooting 52.5% from the field.
- The Nets are congratulating themselves too much for this year’s playoff appearance, writes Mike Vaccaro of The New York Post. He argues that 38 wins and an early exit from the postseason is way too little to expect from a team with the league’s highest payroll and three players with maximum contracts.