Billy King: Next coach must preach toughness

Ben Couch of the Brooklyn Nets spoke with Nets General Manager Billy King about the highs and lows of last season, as well as some of his expectations for the future.

In covering the process and the expectations of selecting a new head coach, King says that they will take their time. He states that they are looking for someone to “take this group collectively and get the most out of them.” He believes that Carlesimo did that, but also says that they could’ve gone further. His main focus is creating a culture that becomes “the identity of the Brooklyn Nets.” He says that “when you come to play us, you know it’s going to be tough-minded and that it’s going to be a dog-fight.”

King draws on an offensive philosophy that he’d like to see the Nets develop: playing team basketball. He refers back to teams such as Miami, San Antonio, the Lakers (of the past), and the Jordan-Bulls. He says that in all of those situations, the team came first.

King says how the move to Brooklyn “exceeded expectations” and even though there were many exciting moments, he thought that the team itself could have went a little further. When asked what defined the Brooklyn experience, King responded by saying that “it was the fan base but also the employees of the building” that made it a true home-court advantage.

King noted that the team “started great, then we had our lull in the beginning of December and then P.J. stepped in and did a good job for us. Then I think we had some injuries down the stretch that I think affected us.” He talks of how he would’ve liked to see the team get to 50 wins, and says the fact that it ended so quickly after they battled back to force a Game 7 was bitter.

King adds that one of his main concerns was not knowing how quickly the team would gel after putting many pieces together so quickly. One of his goals was to get home-court advantage and finish in the top four in the Eastern Conference and by doing that, he thought it would’ve helped the team get to the second round.

You can check out the entire interview here.