The Nets are in the middle of a long, unconventional rebuild but that hasn’t deterred veterans from aiming for the postseason in 2017/18. Anthony Puccio of Nets Daily recently broke down some Timofey Mozgov comments suggesting exactly that.
While it’s worth recognizing that little stock should be placed in an NBA player saying they think their team can make the playoffs when asked directly, this is the 20-62 Nets we’re talking about and their success or failure will directly impact one of the summer’s most significant storylines (the Cavaliers acquiring Brooklyn’s first-rounder in the Kyrie Irving trade).
Earlier this offseason, Jeremy Lin adamantly claimed that the Nets would make the playoffs in 2017/18, as Ryne Nelson of SLAM Online broke down, and perhaps more weight should be put in those comments than in Mozgov’s. While D’Angelo Russell may well be the biggest long-term building block the franchise has, it’s hard to argue that Lin is anything but their best player here and now.
Of course any discussion about the Nets’ playoff chances should touch on the fact that this isn’t a typical young, rebuilding organization. Lacking their pick in 2018, there’s no incentive for Brooklyn to lose games. In fact, rallying together for a shot at the playoffs could be the most beneficial thing Kenny Atkinson and Sean Marks could hope for in the development of their young core.
There’s more from the Atlantic Division:
- There were some in the Nets organization that wanted to give international free agent Milos Teodosic a look but the point guard’s age and defensive shortcomings hurt his chances, a Nets Daily report says.
- Reflecting back on the Irving trade, Zach Lowe of ESPN discusses why he thinks the trade made sense for both sides. The long-read packed with video highlights is a must-read on this magical Labor Day Eve.
- If you’re concerned about the lingering effects of a torn labrum, you’re not alone. Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe recently spoke with an orthopedic hip surgeon about just that. “When you have a labral tear from impingement, that means that the way that Isaiah Thomas’s hip is shaped, it’s shaped in a way that’s not round,” Derek Ochiai said. “In certain positions, his hip is not round on round. That’s why it’s called impingement, the bone will impinge because it’s not a round-on-round joint. Once you tear your labrum from that, that’s the most common cause of labral tears in any athlete, that tear is not going to heal. It’s always going to be torn, the question is how do you treat that?” The doctor added, however, that there are some high-level athletes with similar conditions that are “doing fine.”
- The Celtics have been busy adding stars this offseason but CBS’ Matt Moore argues that the club’s biggest star could actually be head coach Brad Stevens.