King: expect C.J. Watson to opt out

C.J. Watson (AP)

Brooklyn Nets general manager Billy King expects Nets backup point guard C.J. Watson to opt out of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent this offseason, King said on the Joe & Evan show on WFAN this morning. Watson, due to make $1.1 million next season if he exercised his option, would likely make more on the open market after his solid season.

At Brooklyn’s press conference introducing Jason Kidd yesterday, I asked King what pieces he felt the Nets needed to add to improve, and the first priority he listed was shooting to space the floor. That answer would seem to indicate that King believes Watson, who shot a career-high 41.1% from three-point range this season, is moving on, and that Nets rookie Tyshawn Taylor isn’t quite ready for the second-string point guard position heading into his second season.

King added that he and Kidd have already discussed potential replacements for Watson. No, Kidd is not one of them.

Kidd also said at yesterday’s press conference that he’s interested in exploring offensive sets with Deron Williams off the ball and either Gerald Wallace or Joe Johnson playing “point forward,” skillsets both players have.