Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Lowdown in New York with Yaros

By the way, I think New Jersey sports are part of New York!

NOTE: This is my first entry for SportsTalkSoup! I will be writing for this blog every Wednesday. Looking forward!

Here is post #1!

The New Jersey Nets can compete with a great team for a while, but then, their lack of talent (mostly defensively) and tremendous lack of experience shows and they get destroyed later in games.

The guide to playing the Nets season properly:

The bottom line is that they will not do anything even if they make the playoffs.

The old core (namely Jason Collins - one of the worst offensive players the league has seen since the advent of the leather sneaker, Jason Kidd - traded away in a brilliant way, Richard Jefferson - traded away in a ? way [all depends on what Yi becomes] and Vince Carter - who will be traded at some point for some good talent [because the Nets' front office is a group of brilliant, very convincing group of gentlemen]) is almost out of town and the new group of players needs to be developed.

The obvious hope is that the new core (as of now includes Yi, Devin Harris and Brook Lopez) develops simultaneously into a group of stars that will lead to a championship when role players are sprinkled in.

Aside from trading VC, what else could the Nets do to begin the process of developing the new core? First, they already made move number 1, they began to start Brook Lopez.

A side note on Lopez - he is very talented offensively. He has a fairly consistent mid range jumper and has numerous moves around the basket. He is not particularly good defensively, but technique and added strength should improve that. The one area that can not be improved, and is not very good, is Lopez's athleticism. He just doesn't have the ups that other players have. It manifests itself most on rebounds and defense. None the less, Lopez could become a 18 point 8 board guy in the next couple of years due to his basketball (as opposed to athletic) talent.

Step 2: would be finding a place on the far end of the bench for Bobby Simmons. First of all, the guy is not very good at anything. He is not a good defender, he is a very streaky outside shooter, he can't dribble and he definitely can't pass! I don't know why he plays, let alone starts?!

Who should start in his place? Well, considering that Yi is really an outside shooter with a very narrow body, I think Sean Williams could easily start as the power forward. One quick thing about Mr. Williams - what Lopez lacks in the athleticism, SW has! Therefore, Sean Williams can guard almost anyone. Moving Yi down to SF offensively would not hurt the Nets on defense because Williams could take either player.

Step 3: is to take useless players with no superior skills out of the rotation. There are guys the Nets are playing off the bench who are throw ins on trades all the time and are relatively useless. Keyon Dooling and Jarvis Hayes should simply not be playing any role. In fact, as bad as he is, I would play Simmons prior to them. Ryan Anderson has some potential. He is a big who can shoot the 3 exceptionally well. He creates match up problems for other teams.

The one thing that makes this machine go, and I have mentioned this in the past, is Devin Harris. His penetration and quickness open holes for other guys and without him the offense looks pathetic. Harris needs to improve his shot (which is already better than Jason Kidd's), but he is creative and gets to the line fabulously (top 2 in the league in FTA).

The Nets need to be versatile. Sean Williams really helps them remain that way because of his defensive abilities. If you think about the offensive liability that he is (remember that he is a heck of a lot better than Jason Collins on offense), recall that the rest of the Nets starting lineup is offensive minded. Harris and Carter are the most prolific scoring back court in the NBA and Brook Lopez and Yi are both offensive players at heart.

The Nets need to start focusing on preparing the new core for a better future and sacrifice the now (not like the Knicks who are relying on picking up a guy in free agency) to have a fabulous future (not as far into the future as you may think). The Eastern Conference is very top heavy with a few good teams and 4 or 5 wide open playoff spots. The Nets could be successful in the mediocre Eastern Conference quite quickly - as long as they take the proper (above) approach.

Hey, I should be the new GM!


Steven Yaros is the founder and chief blogger for

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