The Nets would have to go on a major winning streak to escape the play-in tournament. Winding up in that extra round could have major offseason consequences, Brian Lewis of the New York Post writes. Coach Steve Nash could find his job in jeopardy, despite all the obstacles he’s been forced to deal with this season. The roster could be overhauled, as Lewis notes only six players have guaranteed contracts for next season and two others can opt out of their deals.
We have more from the Atlantic Division:
- Knicks center Nerlens Noel did not play on Sunday due to plantar fasciitis and he could be out for an extended period, according to The New York Post’s Marc Berman. Coach Tom Thibodeau said Noel would not play until he recovered from the foot ailment and got some regular practice time. Noel has played in just 25 games due to an assortment of knee, hamstring and foot injuries. He signed a three-year, $27.7MM contract last summer with a team option for the final year.
- DeAndre Jordan said his prior relationships with coach Doc Rivers and starters James Harden and Tobias Harris, plus the need for a backup center, made the Sixers an easy choice after he cleared waivers, Tim Bontemps of ESPN tweets. Jordan heaped praise on his former Clippers coach, Gina Mizell of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets. “He’s the best coach I’ve ever had, he’s more than a coach to me … when a new player comes to a team, it’s always everybody trying to get them to feel acclimated, but with Doc, he’s gonna curse me out like I’ve been here all season,” said Jordan, who played 10 minutes in his Sixers debut on Monday.
- The Raptors’ loss to the Cavaliers on Sunday makes it seem almost inevitable that Toronto will wind up in the play-in tournament, Josh Lewenberg of TSN Canada writes. The defeat dropped Toronto three games behind Cleveland, which sits in sixth place in the East and also holds a tiebreaker advantage over the Raptors.