BROOKLYN NETS: Ground-Breaking of Barclays Center was the First Real Symbolic Event Marking the Return of Major League Sports to Brooklyn. This Weekend Marked Event Number Two; Our Name is Now Official.
....And by the way, the Owner is Finally Back in Town.
He's back! But after chasing down the Russian presidency and admitting he would have put the team in a Trust, Mikhail Prokhorov's word can no longer be taken at face value. For me, he returns to a state of disappointment over his winter long absence. Not to mention, the Nets' 35th and final season in the Garden State should have been handled with a little more ceremony, gratitude, and appreciation for fans in New Jersey. That's where owners come in. That's their job. I just felt there could have been more done towards both affects. Now, I feel he must show "US" all he finally means business, again.
The Nets have been officially eliminated from this year's playoffs. That's not a big deal. We all understood the situation coming into the season. But the real work now lies ahead trying to see if Deron Williams will remain with the club and move with the team to Brooklyn. And as if the Dwight Howard situation hasn't been complicated enough, it has now been determined he has a herniated disk in his back. As has been theorized throughout, Dwight Howard's status will still play a large role in Deron Williams' decision to stay or leave. With proper treatment and next season's trade deadline possibilities, Dwight Howard may still yet get traded from Orlando and become a Net before the inaugural 2012-2013 season in Brooklyn is through.
Mikhail Prokhorov still says he's committed to delivering an NBA championship level team to Brooklyn. According to his own initial mission statement, he's got three years left in what was originally announced at the 2010-2011 NBA Draft Lottery "show", as a five year plan to make that happen.
But ever since last season's Melo Drama played out to bring Carmelo Anthony to either one of New York City's soon to be two NBA teams, Mr. Prokhorov, in my opinion, due to his absence from daily operations, failed to satisfy his duties as owner during during a time when his club was, or is, supposedly still courting its' new fan base, and during a time the Knicks seemed in apparent disarray.
His subtle yet powerfully amusing foreign billionaire charisma could have only helped in establishing the Nets' emerging presence within the city. But the bravado Mikhail Prokhorov brought with him was lost on an entire season. For an owner's part, there is a Media war with Jim Dolan to be won, and Mikhail Prokhorov failed to assert his presence in this town after so effectively arriving on the scene. To me, the winter was an opportunity lost on him to befriend Brooklyn prior, and leading up to this Fall's Opening season inside brand new Barclays Center. Billboards can only get one so far.
This was the weekend when the NBA's Board of Governors was to give their stamp of final approval for the Nets' move into the Borough of Kings, and officially granting them their name - the Brooklyn Nets - the name minority share holder and Brooklynite, Jay-Z, wanted so dearly. After April 30, 2012, the New Jersey Nets will cease to be. The team officially becomes.....
The Brooklyn Nets
Photo taken with permission from:
Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn
This is a seminal moment for Kings County. But the major pomp and celebration of the resurrection, and relaunch of pro sports in Brooklyn is largely still ahead of us. That will all be handled with concerts at Barclays Center; a pre-season hockey game between the New Jersey Devils and the New York Islanders; and a few other select events. Then Opening Night for the Nets will arrive and.....
For now, gaining their name remains a quietly observed event.
Barclays Center ~ April 2012
Barclays Center site in March 2010