Posted on: October 2nd, 2014 by Benny Nadeau Comments


Projected Record: 49-33 (6th in West)


Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard, trying to stay fresh. (AP)

Head coach: Kevin McHale
Projected record: 49-33 (6th)
2013-14 record: 54-28
2013-14 ORtg: 108.6 (4th)
2013-14 DRtg: 103.1 (12th)
Players in: Jeff Adrien, Trevor Ariza, Clint Capela, Joey Dorsey, Alonzo Gee, Scotty Hopson, Nick Johnson, Kostas Papanikolaou, Ish Smith, rights to Alessandro Gentile
Players out: Omer Asik, Omri Casspi, Troy Daniels, Francisco Garcia, Jordan Hamilton, Jeremy Lin, Chandler Parsons
Projected Starting Lineup: Patrick Beverly, James Harden, Trevor Ariza, Terrence Jones, Dwight Howard

RELATED: A Totally Real AIM Conversation Between Rockets GM Daryl Morey and Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban

Another season, another year chasing the Spurs. This is one of the best teams in the Western Conference, but will it be enough?

The Rockets are star-powered. James Harden and Dwight Howard should be able to power them through games against most Eastern Conference teams, and I fully expect Patrick Beverley to take a huge step forward in the absence of Jeremy Lin. But they've got no immediate, reliable help from the bench outside of Francisco Garcia: Nick Johnson looked great in preseason and Troy Daniels was Houston’s unsung hero in 2014, but that’s a whole lot of pressure and responsibility for a couple of kids with hardly any NBA experience.

Although Ariza’s first stint in Houston was mediocre in all senses of the word, his second stop may prove more successful. Having a reliable defensive presence on the floor should stop this from happening again anytime soon.

If the Rockets can snag Rajon Rondo from Boston, that trio might be enough to take down most teams on a given night. Unfortunately, that (or this) sharp-shooting, high-octane team will suffer from lack of depth come playoff time.



The New York Post is reporting that Rasean Tate, 28, of Brooklyn is suing Levy Restaurant Holdings for civil rights violations stemming from an incident involving the Houston Rockets in 2013. According to the Post:

Tate claims that he was setting up a buffet in the visiting Rockets locker room before a game on Feb. 22, 2013, when he was all but chased from the area because he was gay.

“When the plaintiff’s back was turned to defendant Rockets players, he began to hear laughter and taunting voices saying ‘get this f—– out of here!’ ” according to the suit, and ” ‘He’s trying to catch a sneaky-peeky!’"....

Still reeling two days later, Tate went to Levy catering manager Darcy Tarpia to relay details of the confrontation. He was offered a verbal apology and promised that the situation would be addressed, according to the suit.

The suit, according to the Post, alleges that when he complained he was gradually pulled off assignments involving locker rooms, depriving him of work and income. The Post piece concludes: "Rockets and Levy reps did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the suit."


Dwight HowardFor over a year, the Brooklyn Nets relentlessly pursued a trade with the Orlando Magic to acquire center Dwight Howard, who made it clear that Brooklyn was his preferred destination. The Dwightmare, we called it.

But proposal after proposal fell short, and the Magic elected to trade Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers in an attempt to press the reset button on their franchise.

Speaking with Jessica Camerato of Basketball Insiders, Howard sheds a little more light on his thought process in those days, and how he presumed a trade was definite.

From Basketball Insiders:
... MORE →


Jazz Nets Basketball

Deron Williams (AP)

The Houston Rockets asked the Brooklyn Nets to do what the Nets couldn't do for two years: unite Deron Williams and Dwight Howard on the same roster.

The Rockets, who have been looking at potential trade scenarios for disgruntled center Omer Asik, called the Nets and made an offer as part of their "due diligence."

According to ESPN, the offer, made before the Nets lost Brook Lopez to a season-ending foot injury, would have included Asik and Jeremy Lin in a package for Deron Williams:

According to a league source, the Rockets had preliminary talks with the Nets last week about Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin. Talks never gained any steam, but the source said the Rockets were doing their due diligence and Williams' name came up. The Nets balked because one of the main reasons Pierce and Garnett agreed to a trade to Brooklyn was to play with Williams, according to the source. Williams, who signed a five-year, $98 million extension in 2012, was playing well upon returning from an ankle injury, and the Nets were looking better.

Should the Nets revisit talks with the Rockets or another contending team and consider trading a key piece like Williams, Garnett or Pierce now that Lopez is out for the season? It might be worth contemplating because this $190 million roster that was supposed to be a Rolls-Royce now is an expensive luxury car with a transmission problem.

This trade would have given the Rockets a three-headed monster of Williams, Howard, and James Harden, potentially catapulting the 18-10 Rockets into championship contention. Conversely, it would have brought Jeremy Lin back to New York City, where he began his incredible Linsanity run -- but instead of re-joining the team he made the run with, he'd join their biggest rivals, and the team that his Linsanity run started against in the first place.

With Garnett and Pierce joining Brooklyn to play with Williams, and Williams rounding into form after a few freak ankle injuries, this trade doesn't make any sense. But Nets GM Billy King may find one that does soon enough.

(h/t NetsDaily)


"Fatigue," Jason Kidd said after the game, scrawling another excuse for another lackluster Brooklyn Nets performance, one where they gave up a franchise-record nineteen three-pointers and 114 total points, all either in the paint, from beyond the arc, or at the free throw line.

"No one quit. It's fatigue," Kidd said, after benching most of his starters for the entire second half after losing the first 24 minutes by a score of 66-40.

There are reasons to point to fatigue. The Nets have had a brutal road schedule so far, with no back-to-back games at home and three road trips of at least two games. The Nets played a back-to-back, the first game on the road, before taking off to Houston on the Thanksgiving holiday. But it's shortsighted and reductive to blame the Nets' issues on the tryptophan in their system.

They haven't been fatigued for sixteen games. They've been bad.
... MORE →


Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard (AP)

At 4-11, the Brooklyn Nets aren't very good. They're at the bottom of the NBA in defensive efficiency and their offense isn't much better. Three players skipped the team's two-game road trip with injuries, and a fourth missed seven straight games heading into tonight.

Here's three things to watch on the floor that aren't soda as they take on the 11-5 Houston Rockets.
... MORE →


Dwight Howard

Former imaginary Brooklyn Net Dwight Howard & the Houston Rockets host Brooklyn. (AP)

One day after the NBA fined coach Jason Kidd roughly the median family income for spilled soda, the 4-11 Brooklyn Nets land in Texas to take on the 11-5 Houston Rockets, led by one man that the Nets desperately tried to acquire two seasons ago.
... MORE →


Here's Mario Elie's exact quote, if you can't get the video to play:

"Hopefully, Dwight Howard, you've got to come down to Texas, man. No state taxes, ain't no pressure down here. You don't have to worry about LA, Hollywood, or Brooklyn. Texas is great. The fans are terrific down here. We support. We're not like the Miami fans leaving when the game's not even over. (laughs) We stay until the end here in Houston. Come on down to Texas, Dwight."

Elie is currently a Brooklyn Nets assistant coach, listed alongside Popeye Jones, Doug Overton, and Patrick Spurgin (technically a player development coach). With new Brooklyn head coach Jason Kidd looking to build a bench with significant coaching experience, all four may not make it to next season. Elie's mind is elsewhere -- even if Elie doesn't end up with the Rockets organization, he played for the team from 1993-98.

As for Howard, the Nets have no shot to acquire him anyway -- they're over the cap and can't sign him outright, and can't do a sign-and-trade since they're above the luxury tax apron; the team would need to shed about $30 million in salary just to get there. Not happening.



The Game Starts Now... MORE →


Grade the Game At Any Time!

Tonight: After beating the Bucks in back-to-back contests, snapping a 13-game losing streak against Milwaukee, the 33-22 Brooklyn Nets play host to the 30-26 Houston Rockets at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The Rockets are fresh off a 122-119 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder, who hold the league's third-best record, after a night in which James Harden scored 46 points while taking just 19 shots.

The BK Game Streak: Today marks game 3 of "The BK Game Streak," where you can build a streak of wins along the betting line over the course of the season. Three prizes will be awarded at the end of the year, with first prize a $200 Amazon Gift Card. Log in with Facebook to get started, vote in the box above, and good luck!

Watch & Listen: Tonight's game is broadcast on YES Network. Ian "The Birdman" Eagle and Greg "The Wear Brooklyn At" Anthony are on the call. The game is radio simulcast on WFAN, and in Spanish on WADO.

More on tonight's game, including injuries and stats, after the jump... MORE →


Today's game marks round 3 of "The BK Game Streak," where you can build a streak predicting how well the BrooklynNets will do in each game for a chance to win a $200 Amazon Gift Card!

The game is as simple as it sounds:

1. The contest relies on a standard betting line for each game. (Note: you must be logged into Facebook to play.) To make your prediction, select YES or NO to agree or disagree. For example: today's statement is: "Brooklyn will beat Houston by 2 or more points." If you think the Nets will win tonight's game by 2 points or more, select "YES." If you think they'll lose or win by just one, select "NO."

2. String together wins and try to get the longest streak of correct predictions before the end of the NBA regular season. Follow game results on the leaderboard on the right sidebar.

At the end of the season, we'll award three prizes to the players with the best three streaks: The Gold Net Trophy (longest streak) and a $200 Amazon Gift Card will be awarded to first place, the Silver Net Trophy (second-longest streak) and a $50 Amazon Gift Card to second place, and the Bronze Net Trophy (third-longest streak) $25 Amazon Gift Card and a Bronze Net Trophy to third place.

Read more rules for the contest here.

Good luck!



The Game Starts Now... MORE →