The Nets will open their preseason Sunday afternoon against the Lakers, but most of their big names won’t be playing, writes Brian Lewis of The New York Post. The expected starting five of Kevin Durant, James Harden, Kyrie Irving, Joe Harris and Blake Griffin will all be held out of the game, along with offseason additions Patty Mills and James Johnson. Coach Steve Nash explained that he didn’t want to put his best players on the court six days after the opening of training camp.
“The game came so quickly, preseason, and we have three more,” Nash said. “We’ll hold back some guys, and other guys will get more opportunity.”
Among the players who will see more court time is fourth-year guard Jevon Carter, who was acquired from the Suns in an offseason deal. Carter averaged just 12 minutes per game with Phoenix last season and is aiming for a spot in Brooklyn’s rotation.
“I’m just expecting to go out there and just do my job, honestly. Whatever comes with it comes with it,” Carter said. “They told me just keep doing what I’m doing. They just kept telling me that they like what I’m doing, and just go out there, stay aggressive and lead the group.”
There’s more from Brooklyn:
- Sunday will mark the first game action for LaMarcus Aldridge since he received medical clearance to start playing again, Lewis adds. “I think LaMarcus will play,” Nash said. “Nobody’s going to play a ton, so we’ll spread it around pretty evenly. We don’t want anyone doing too much and exposing themselves this early. Hopefully he plays enough that he feels good about it, and at the same time isn’t playing too much.”
- The Nets will have a quick reunion with DeAndre Jordan, who spent the past two seasons in Brooklyn before being traded last month, notes Kyle Goon of The Orange County Register. Jordan says he still has a lot of friends on the team, but he’s concentrating now on helping the Lakers. “I got a lot of love for those guys over there,” he said. “So I’m not thinking about ‘Oh, I should’ve stayed.’ I’m not thinking about that. I’m thinking about where I’m at now and my focus is here with this group of guys.”
- Free agent addition Paul Millsap is willing to accept a reduced role to help the Nets win a title, per Tom Dowd of NBA.com. The 36-year-old was fully aware of what would be expected when he chose to sign with Brooklyn. “This team is not going to need me to get out there and go to work on the block and score 15, 20 points,” he said. “I understand that. Knowing my role on this team is going to be big and crucial and everybody knowing their role is going to be big and crucial to winning.”