Barring injuries, the Brooklyn Nets have had a relatively set rotation in recent months -- a starting five of Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Gerald Wallace, Reggie Evans, and Brook Lopez, and a bench filling in around that. But before Sunday night's nationally televised game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Nets interim head coach P.J. Carlesimo hinted that that may change soon:
"I'm not sure that the bench that is the bench now is going to be the bench in another week or two," Carlesimo said in response to a question about the team's overall bench performance.
Carlesimo acknowledged that the bench has been inconsistent in recent weeks, and took responsibility for that issue. "We've contributed to that by the ways we've subbed and a little bit now with the injuries ... They've flat-out won some games for us, but I still think we're not exactly where we need to be."
The most obvious change would be a switch at the power forward position, moving Reggie Evans to the bench in favor of either Kris Humphries, Mirza Teletovic, Andray Blatche, or a small lineup with Gerald Wallace at the 4.
I hope PJ doesn't stop playing Reggie. I think the team is better off playing Big than it is playing small. And while I believe in Mirza over the long term, he currently misses lots of shots and plays poor defense. This is not his year. And yes, I would also play Shengalia at least a few times for significant minutes to see what he can provide. He dominated for stretches in the D-League. I doubt he is ready to play in the NBA. But it would be worth 25 minutes against a team like the Hornets coming up to get a better sense. Playoffs are locked though. And getting above the fourth seed is probably impossible. While slipping below the 6th seed is unlikely. And there is no particular difference between starting off against Atlanta or Indiana. So the rest of the season isn't too important anyway.