Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Truth About the Brooklyn Nets, Without Dwight Howard

Last season, with both Gerald Wallace and Deron Williams on the court, the Nets had an amazing record of 6-6. They were a .500 team.   Out of those 6 wins, a grand total of 1 of them were against playoffs teams, or even teams that had a .500 record. The Wallace/Williams Connection went 1-5 against playoff teams.
Now what does this mean? With the way that the Brooklyn Nets are currently constructed, without Dwight Howard, they are not nearly what everyone is making them out to be.

In addition to Wallace and Williams, add in Joe Johnson; who, in terms of salary cap issues, is a terrible acquisition. He's essentially Brooklyn's version of Amar'e Stoudemire. Grossly overpaid, and is not nearly as good he used to be. Johnson's numbers have declined over the past two seasons, with his PPG dropping from 21.3 in 2009-10 to 18.2 in 2010-11 and 18.8 in 2011-12. Joe Johnson is not nearly as good as people are all of a sudden thinking of him as. He's a B- player who does not take a team from pure futility with a possible ceiling of mediocre, to a playoff team that can "get into the second round."

Due to the fact that Joe has an enormous deal over the next few years, that means that the Nets cannot go out and get great role players. With Williams, Wallace, and Johnson alone, the payroll will be at $50 million. The bench will be very low budget and at times can be completely unhelpful.

The current pieces around these three players aren't great. On paper, Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, and MarShon Brooks look like good players to have, which is true, but the Nets had these same role players last year. Their record? 22-44.

In an 82 game season, that translates to about 27 wins, for a record of 27-55. The only changes that they have made so far, they have added Joe Johnson and Reggie Evans. Do Joe Johnson and Reggie Evans equate to 14 wins? 

Their ceiling is a 7th or 8th seed in the playoffs.

That is, unless they get Dwight Howard, then that's when things change.

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