We have a special guest preview for tonight’s game. In an attempt to familiarize us with the opponent, Nets are Scorching blogger Justin DeFeo was kind enough to answer a few questions. I did the same, so if you aren’t sick of reading my thoughts, be sure to head over there to check them out. Enjoy!
1) How is it that the Nets (last in the NBA in defensive rating) are worse defensively than the Clippers (25th)?
The short answer – lack of talent. The long answer, well it’s still lack of talent, but injuries and limited practice time hinders as well. To start the year the Nets were behind the eight ball in terms of continuity. They added lots of new players in the off-season and fitting that group to the system Avery Johnson employs without much of a training camp or practice time to do so has proved difficult. Making things worse has been the injuries that have piled up for the Nets this season and it has not allowed them to develop any type of chemistry whats so ever, especially on the defensive end of the floor.
2) Word on the streets is that MarShon Brooks has stolen the hearts of Nets fans and the editors of Nets are Scorching, in particular. Aside from swag sleeves, what makes him such a bright spot in an otherwise disappointing season?
MarShon has had an interesting season this year, but one thing he has certainly proven is that he can score the basketball at the NBA level. I’m still excited to see how he develops his overall game. In terms of him being a bright spot, I think a lot has to do with the fact that the Nets were just so devoid of talent that ANYBODY that came along and proved they are more than just a bench player in starter’s clothing would have caused the Nets fan to rejoice. Also, all fans love to scream STEAL! anytime they think they got one in the draft, so coupled with the lack of talent, MarShon’s late draft status certainly helped give Nets fans a reason to cheer.
3) Deron Williams dropped 57 against the Bobcats, but with losses (like last night’s 30-point blowout to the Heat) mounting, how is it affecting him? He’s averaging a career-high 21 points a game, but should we expect to see him become even more of a scorer?
Deron has ultimately admitted that losing will make him “grouchy” and I don’t think he’s portrayed anything but that after losses. How it affects his overall view of the franchise is a different story. The Nets have made all indications that they want Deron to stay and they have allowed him to be involved in decisions regarding the team’s future. If nothing else, Deron is invested into this team as much as anyone and we’ve been told that he is on board with the vision of the team going forward. Nothing DWill has said so far this year would lead me to believe otherwise.
In terms of his scoring, 57 was an outlier sure, but I would expect DWill to be very aggressive from here on out and that’s more out of necessity than anything else.
Bonus Question: Looks like Brook Lopez will be out a couple more weeks. It obviously hurts their chances of trading for Dwight Howard, but how does it affect them on the court?
It’s really hard to say how the actually x’s and o’s of having Brook on the court will be affected simply because there is a small sample size of Brook playing with this unit together.