The NBA 30 in 30 is a look at each team as the coming 2013-2014 season approaches. This look reviews their current roster, last year's experience, new developments and a prediction as to where the organization will end at the conclusion of the upcoming year of NBA action.
If the National Basketball Association were an organized gambling league then the Brooklyn Nets took this past NBA Draft as an opportunity to go “all in.” The club mad a move to bring over two highly recognized NBA All-Stars from a divisional rival in an attempt to put together a roster to win a title. On paper, they have a unit that can do just that.
Thanks to a trade with the Boston Celtics, the Brooklyn Nets have welcomed Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to join Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Brooke Lopez. Just looking at that starting lineup has to be a cause for concern among other teams in the league, but it will be interesting to see how well the unit plays together. In the past there are examples where teams have be meshed together only to not perform well due to misunderstandings of player tendencies. The early Miami Heat days of the “Big Three” stand as a testament to that. The Nets will have to overcome those issues early.
While he may be overlooked at times, Williams is one of the best point guards in the league. Last year he averaged 20.6 points and 8.4 assists per game but wasn't truly recognized for his effective play. Lopez matured into a prominent big man as he led the team with 22.3 points per game while bringing in 7.4 rebounds. Johnson was expected to be their premier scorer but he often struggled at times as his averages were noticeably low.
At 37 and 35 years of age respectively, there are questions as to what Garnett and Pierce can bring to the team for a full 82 game season. No one will doubt their abilities in crunch time and leadership in the locker room, but the question of how much time they can spend on the court will have to tackled. They both ended last season under their career lows and the decline is only expected to continue.
Expected Starting Lineup with 2012-2013 stats
Deron Williams, PG: 20.6 PPG, 8.4 APG
Joe Johnson, SG: 14.9 PPG, 3.1 RPG
Paul Pierce, SF: 18.6 PPG, 6.3 RPG
Kevin Garnett, PF: 14.8 PPG, 7.8 RPG
Brooke Lopez, C: 22.3 PPG, 7.4 RPG
Expected Season Finish
5th in the Eastern Conference