Deron Williams, Kris Humphries

Nets-Celtics to participate in experimental reduced game . (AP)

Give Commissioner Adam Silver this: He’s not afraid to dip his toes in the water. Neither are the Nets, it turns out.

The Brooklyn Nets will play host to a 44-minute exhibition game with the Boston Celtics this Sunday reducing the time of the game by four minutes.

The format reduces each quarter one minute meaning the pair of divisional rivals play four, 11 minute quarters. Both The Nets and Celtics volunteered to try the reduced format.

"When this idea came up at the coaches’ meeting, I thought it was a unique experiment that was worth participating in," Nets coach Lionel Hollins said in a prepared statement. "I’m looking forward to gauging its impact on the flow of the game. Since there is a shorter clock, it affects playing time, so it’ll be interesting to see how it plays into substitution patterns.”

In addition to reduced playing time, the game will feature a new format for mandatory timeouts:

During this 44-minute game, each quarter will feature two mandatory timeouts per quarter, with the first triggered at the first dead ball under 6:59 of the period if neither team has taken a timeout prior, and the second mandatory timeout will be triggered by the first dead ball under 2:59 if neither team has taken a timeout subsequent to the first mandatory timeout.

The test case seeks to examine several issues. First, is the matter of game time: The average NBA game last two hours and 15 minutes. The exhibition game will be studied closely for an impact on “player-substitution patterns and flow of the game to determine if there's a better experience.”

Reducing each game by four minutes also can reduce the impact and stress the long regular season has on a NBA player’s body. At first glance, a four-minute game reduction seems small, but it actually leads to 7 less games worth of playing times.

The NBA may also take a look at this format in additional preseason games and select D-League games.

Despite stratospheric team valuations, and a jaw-dropping 9-year $24 billion dollar broadcast rights deal with ESPN and Turner Sports, the Commissioner Silver-led NBA remains fearless when it comes to trying something new.

 

Pierce contends Nets never made an offer (AP)

Pierce contends Nets never made him an offer (AP)

Paul Pierce offered a different account of events that led to his signing with the Washington Wizards today while adding in some not-so-lofty expectations for his former team.

In an interview with David Aldridge of NBA.com, Pierce suggested that the Brooklyn Nets did not exactly put out the welcome mat for his return despite The Truth’s willingness to resign with the team.

Truthfully, I thought I was going to end up back in Brooklyn, with Kevin [Garnett]. I told Kevin, if you're not going to retire, then I probably will come back. But when Brooklyn didn't give me an offer, it was like, I talked to him, and I kind of started looking at my options then.

In response to a question about a lack of effort by Brooklyn to work a sign and trade with The Clippers, Pierce again cited his surprise by Brooklyn’s lack of interest and offered more on the team’s expectations this season.

Brooklyn's been, or New Jersey, Brooklyn, they're a franchise that's going in a different direction, I think. They said they wanted to cut costs, they felt like they weren't going to be a contender. Right now, they're kind of in the middle right now. And I really didn't want to be in the middle.

Pierce’s account differs quite a bit from General Manager Billy King’s interpretation of events. Late last month King suggested that from the onset of free agency Pierce seemed interested in signing elsewhere. This forced The Nets to pursue another route ultimately signing Euro-stash Bojan Bogdonavic and trading for combo guard Jarret Jack and swingman Sergey Karasev.

Whatever the truth (not Truth) is there is no denying bring back Pierce would’ve cost The Nets far more than the 2 year, $11 million contract he received from the Wizards. Repeater tax provisions included in the last collective bargaining agreement would have cost The Nets $22 million or roughly the same salary as LeBron James.

Costs aside, Pierce’s comments suggest that The Truth may be a little extra motivated when he returns to Barclays on January 17th.

-- David Aldridge, Morning Tip, NBA.com

 

 

AP.

AP.

 

LeBron James, Mason Plumlee

Another decent case for more  Plumlee minutes. (AP)

Mason Plumlee’s summer continues to get better. Fresh off surviving a round of cuts on the U.S. Men’s National Basketball Team, ESPN Analyst Bradford Doolittle made the case that Plumlee  deserves more minutes during the ’14-’15 season.

From Doolittle’s ESPN Insider piece (subscription required): “Plumlee's 19.0 PER was a revelation for the Nets a season ago, as he played 1,275 minutes and started 22 games to help Brooklyn survive the lost season of Brook Lopez.” Doolittle points to his brother Miles development in year two and a Brooklyn atmosphere that may call for Plumlee to step up: Andray Blatche is gone, Kevin Garnett  may not be able to contribute “much more than 20 minutes per night,” and concerns remain about Brook Lopez’s health.

Doolittle noted Lionel Hollins propensity to play traditional big man lineups as another reason Nets fans should see more of Plumlee on the court. Specifically, for those fans calling for Plumlee at the power forward spot, Doolitte cited Plumlee’s potential defensive prowess at the 4:

He played much more in the middle than at power forward as a rookie, but according to 82games.com, his defensive PER was much better at the 4. Plumlee's numbers at Synergy Sports Technologies suggest he wasn't comfortable stepping out against jump-shooters, but he's got the mobility and athleticism to guard most 4s.

Finally, Doolittle believes that Plumlee’s strong inside presence on the offensive end complements the strong face up games that the rest of The Nets group of bigs possess.  At the four or the five, Doolittle, like quite a few Nets fans, think Plumlee can play along with Lopez, Garnett or Teletovic (and what big couldn’t work with a stretch 4 like MT3) with relative ease.

All signs point to a bigger role for Plumlee next year, regardless of his status with the USA Men’s Basketball Team.

ESPN – Players who deserve more minutes

 

Uni-Watch

Uni-Watch

A whole bunch of alleged jerseys from Adidas' upcoming NBA catalog have leaked and were posted on Uni-Watch last night. There, you can find the Brooklyn Nets and their would-be Christmas Day Uniforms. Stylistically, the jerseys have some few differences worth pointing out: the front will have the "B" logo and the back will have the player's first names.

Since Adidas doesn't know the 2014-2015 NBA Schedule yet, they often make up mock drafts for all 30 teams, just in case.

However, after two straight blowouts on the holiday-- one at the hands of Paul Pierce in 2012 and then one with Pierce on their side in 2013-- it's safe to say that Brooklyn will probably get Christmas Day off this time around.

 

 

Pierce

Pierce (AP)

After just one season with Brooklyn, Pierce and the Nets have moved on from each other.

Paul Pierce has signed with the Washington Wizards for 11 million over 2 years, Marc Stein reports.

With the mega spending from Brooklyn over the last two years, their decision to cut it off now will surely be a much discussed point heading into this season.

 

UPDATE: Marc Stein reports that the Nets are wrapping up a deal with Lionel Hollins to be their next head coach:

ESPN's Marc Stein is reporting that the Nets are "closing in" on hiring former Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins.

Stein is also adding that the Nets and Hollins are hammering out a multi-year contract that will pay him at least $4-million annually.

In the 2012-13 season, his final with the Grizzlies, Hollins led the team to 56 wins and to the Western Conference Finals. His Grizzlies saw the playoffs in each of last three years with the team. He was let go due to "philosophical differences" between him and ownership.

In the ESPN New York article, Stein says:

Sources say the Nets wanted to move quickly in the wake of the Kidd saga and lasered in on Hollins immediately, meeting with him Monday and Tuesday.

Hollins has been a favorite of Nets officials for some time and was pursued by Brooklyn to serve as an assistant to Kidd after the in-season departure of Lawrence Frank, but the former Grizzlies coach was determined to wait for a head-coaching opportunity. Hollins was also chased hard this spring by the Houston to serve as the top aide to Rockets coach Kevin McHale in the event that he didn't land a top position.

Nets general manager Billy King, during an appearance Wednesday on ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike," said experience would be key when making the team's next head-coaching hire.

"One, I think we're looking for experience, someone we'll build with for a long time," King said. "Someone who can develop young players, develop veterans and have a tough mindset. But someone also who has the experience who can take us to where we want to go."

On Tuesday, King praised Hollins' work in Memphis.

"If you look at track record and what he did in Memphis, they consistently got better every year," he said.

A deal with Hollins would cap a tumultuous week for the Nets.

Stay tuned.

 

AP

AP

Well, tonight officially went bonkers. In case you missed it, the Nets have given head coach Jason Kidd permission to speak to the Milwaukee Bucks to be the head of their basketball operations.

Given what information is out there, do you want Jason Kidd back?

Vote below.

 

The Nets and Heat will wear jerseys with nicknames on the back for their game on January 10, and today, Slam Magazine has released a few of the images.

A few of the Nets jerseys are as follows:

And for the Heat:

For the Nets, the D-Will and Truth ones were no-brainers. Kirilenko's is so cool with the Russian spelling of his name.

I got really sad in realizing that we'll never see Brook Lopez's "Brooklyn on the front, Brooklyn on the back" jersey.

 

Well, it finally happened.

Kevin Garnett spoke with reporters today and admitted that he isn't sure what his role is in the Nets offense.

The Nets beat writers recorded the exchange on Twitter. The Daily News' Stefan Bondy presented the quotes as follows:

Obviously, this is getting bad. These "I don't know my role" quotes have haunted the Nets these last two years. Gerald Wallace famously said it after game 80 last season. Nine games later, their season was over.

For KG, a guy who was brought in to lead and "intensify" this roster, to not know where he fits is very troubling.

Andrei Kirlenko listed as probable

Posted on: December 31st, 2013 by Chris Hooker Comments

 

Per Brooklyn Nets PR, Andrei Kirilenko is listed as probable to play tonight against the Spurs. Kirilenko has been out since Nov. 8 with back spasms.

Tyshawn Taylor is also listed as out with a mild haram string sprain.

Update: Kirilenko is a go and will play 10-12 minutes at SF.

Stan Van Gundy is not impressed

Posted on: December 31st, 2013 by Chris Hooker Comments

 

Stan Van Gundy, former coach of the Orlando Magic, had some choice words on the Brooklyn Nets.

Van Gundy said:

“I think with all the injuries it’s been hard to evaluate Jason Kidd. It’s been easy to jump on him not just because of the record, but the things coming out of their locker room, the situation with Lawrence Frank, the incident of spilling the drink on the floor. I mean this has looked like a bush league organization much of the year, they don’t play with much effort at all, a very uninspired team. But at the same time they had so many people hurt you just don’t know. And now they are not they are not going to be healthy all year…

Van Gundy certainly has a point, but let's hope the ship can turn quickly.