While we won’t actually get to see the Knicks play the Nets tonight, Chris Hooker from
NetsAreScorching The Brooklyn Game was still kind enough to answer three questions about Brooklyn’s new team.
1. The Nets roster has been largely overhauled. What should the league expect to see from this team?
The league should expect to see a team better than the last few years. Past that, I’m not really sure. Deron Williams is going to be better. Joe Johnson should benefit from playing with a better PG. Brook Lopez should be the teams leading or second-leading scorer and, now that he isn’t battling mono and foot injuries, his rebounding should improve. Their bench is deeper. Brooklyn’s main problem is that they aren’t strong on defense and I fear what Carmelo Anthony is going to do against them (even if he is going against their far-and-away best defender in Gerald Wallace). Personally, I’m thrilled to see what kind of team the Nets are going to be, but as of right now, a lot of it is still unknown.
2. I’ve been pretty vocal about my thoughts that Avery Johnson is an overrated coach, going back to 2005. Recently I mused that Brooklyn should consider D’Antoni for their head coaching role. What’s your confidence level with the lil general, and am I out of left field thinking the current Nets roster would suit Coach Pringles?
I’m not calling for the job of Avery Johnson, but I would 100% back a Mike D’Antoni offense in Brooklyn. In fact, I wrote about this a few months ago (http://netsarescorching.com/2012/09/13/back-to-school-joe-johnson/). It makes a lot of sense for this Nets team to adopt a run-and-gun offense. The Nets don’t play defense, but they can score in bunches. They have 3 starters capable of scoring 20+ a game. It suits them. The only problem with adopting that is whether or not Brook Lopez is quick enough (and he probably isn’t). But, I am absolutely in the camp of the Nets focusing moreso on their strengths, which would be scoring. They are as good as they are going to get on defense at this point.
3. Most rivalries are built from playoff clashes (Lakers-Celtics). However fans in close geographical locations can create their own rivalry (Yankees-Mets). I see a lot (a LOT) of Nets gear in the city. Are you seeing Knick fans coming over to the other side, and will sharing a city make them natural opponents for years to come?
I’m not from New York City, and I don’t really know whether or not Knicks fans are jumping ship. I hope they aren’t, personally. I want Knicks fans to hate the Nets, just like I hate the Knicks. Coming over from Manhattan seems fake to me. I consider myself a diehard fan, and I would never in a heartbeat root for the Knicks. I hope this is true for Knicks fans as well. I’ve seen celebrities making the switch, the most public being Ethan Hawke and Jimmy Fallon talking on the Late Show about changing hats. I love the rivalry and I am beyond psyched to see it in action.