Thaddeus Young said he and Brook Lopez have already begun trying to recruit free agents to the Nets, hinting that they’re trying to get in the ear of some superstars, notes Andy Vasquez of The Record (Twitter link). It figures to be a tough sell, given Brooklyn’s poor on-court performance this season and lack of a 2016 first-round pick. The team was reportedly eyeing DeMar DeRozan and Nicolas Batum, both of whom appear in line for max deals, though those reports emerged before the Nets reassigned former GM Billy King. Young could also try to convince John Calipari to come to Brooklyn, since the power forward has a relationship with the college coach who made a strong push to recruit him before he went to Georgia Tech instead, notes Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News (Twitter link), though it’s unclear if Young will indeed make such an effort. Here’s more from Brooklyn:
- Owner Mikhail Prokhorov doesn’t see the Nets as being that far away from the top, touting Lopez, Young and the team’s developing players and saying “we need one or two players to make a championship contender” in a televised interview with YES Network’s Sarah Kustok (transcription via NetsDaily).
- Prokhorov wants interim coach Tony Brown to “find out what we have,” Brown said to reporters, indicating that the young players will get plenty of chances to play, Vasquez tweets.
- Assistant Joe Wolf will serve as Brown’s primary aide, notes Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork.com.
- Nets assistant GM Frank Zanin is a quiet type with close ties to King and was a strong advocate for acquiring the rights to draft-and-stash prospect Juan Vaulet, as NetsDaily writes in a profile of the man who’s in charge of the front office while the team searches for King’s replacement.
- TNT’s David Aldridge, writing in his Morning Tip column for NBA.com, wouldn’t be surprised if King recommends former Cavs and Hawks GM Danny Ferry, who was King’s teammate at Duke, for the GM job with the Nets. King will reportedly have input on his successor, though Prokhorov downplayed the idea.