Wednesday, December 21, 2011

NJ/BKN Nets ~ The Nets' Gambit Continues

From the desk of:  THE HOOPS OF FLATBUSH


Today Brooklyn.  Tomorrow the World!

Welcome to the Bond bold new world of the Nets.  They currently have more sub-plots than the Ian Flemming classic; From Russia With Love.  Be it in Newark or the Kremlin; Orlando; or back in Brooklyn;  -  the Nets are engaged in covert Ops in all aspects of their efforts and on two different hemispheres to boot.  From late night secret meetings in Orlando hotel rooms all the way to government overthrows against the former head of the KGB; Vladimir Putin.  Welcome to the bold and brave new world of the Nets indeed.

The Nets' billionaire owner has launched an all out bid to become Russia's MCIC; Main Comrade in Charge. Yeah..., but what about your team dude?  Rest easy Nets Fans.  Apparently Mikhail Prokhorov is rich enough to supposedly have been in a hotel room meeting with Dwight Howard and get away with it, while simultaneously campaigning in Russia to become it's new modern day benevolent Tsar.  Now that's multi-tasking.  If I said any more..., he'd probably have to kill us.

That said, resident New Jersey basketball fans will finally commence the Lock-Out delayed, season long good-bye to their local NBA team who wore the state's name on their uniforms for the last thirty-five years and represented them in two NBA Finals along the way.  And frankly with the way things transpired this off-season, the fans of New Jersey deserved better than a delayed start.

While this final season in New Jersey has every potential to ring hollow with New Jersey Nets fans, the question is how many will become former Net fans?  Or, how many will stay loyal to the team despite the small increase in mileage between them?  But because the Nets are only moving to the other side of New York Harbor, a respectful and cordial parting seems more appropriate than an apathetic one, or worse, filled with rage over the team leaving for somewhere as far away from them as possible.  Treat this as more of a dynamic that comes along with operating in the NY/NJ metropolitan area.  Just look at the New York Giants and the New York Jets.  So the move is minor in geographical terms and dare I say insignificant for the person who frequently watches games from the comfort of their sofa.

At least the Nets know where they are going to get some sure rebounds from this season.  Mr. Kardashian Chris Humphries agreed on a one year deal and will return to the Nets.  In an off-season a little shy on good news, signing Humphries was a start; if not hastened by the lack of progress with Dwight Howard.  And now that Brook Lopez took stock of himself and admitted he was guilty of "...being lazy" last season, perhaps the Nets can get his mind fixed on pulling down some rebounds as well.  If he's still here that is.

The quest to wrestle Dwight Howard from Orlando continues albeit unsuccessfully.  Yet the rumors Orlando and the Nets can and will strike a deal still abound.  There is an astronomical amount of pressure on GM Billy King to find a way to get this deal done considering the Center has indirectly made it known he'd prefer a trade to the Nets or the Lakers.  A deal with the Lakers is still not out of the question.  Just maybe, there's a chance Billy King pulls this off.  After all, no one saw the Deron Williams trade coming....did they?

Then there was that mess about potential tampering charges Orlando was rumored to have considered levying against New Jersey.  The initial story was over-blown and taken way out of context.  The Nets did indeed have permission to talk to somebody, just not Dwight Howard directly.  However it is safe to say the meeting slash communication wasn't conducted according to the League's rules of engagement.  What remains true however, Orlando needs trade partners and so find themselves in a bit of a bind.  They exists in the newly dubbed - Melo Zone.  And that's probably why the tampering  episode fell silent.  I do not believe the Commissioner even so much as commented on the rumors.  In any case, the Nets have their work cut out for them.

There is so much riding on the potential acquisition of arguably the premiere Center in the NBA.  First off, the Nets want, and perhaps need, to assemble a competitive team in time for their arrival in Brooklyn.  Second and more importantly, they very desperately need to keep Deron Williams in the fold.  He has already informed the club he will let his current pact expire.  But Williams' camp also hinted he's prepared to stay a Net.  And let's face it, Deron Williams isn't staying if the Nets can't land Howard.  Talk about being in a bind.

For the Nets, their huge gambit continues.

Barclays Center ~ December 2011


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