Nets general manager Billy King, still a Philadelphia resident, hopped on CBS Philadelphia radio with Michael Barkann and Ike Reese to talk a variety of topics.
In Nets land, Mike & Ike asked King about the team’s lack of draft picks, which King admits concerns him a bit. The Nets don’t have any picks this year, and may not have their own first rounder until 2019. But King readily admits that they’re looking towards the future, with this current Nets era likely coming to a close in two to four years.
“We’ll be looking to acquire other assets down the road to replace some of those (picks),” King told Mike & Ike. “Those years that…we don’t have picks, right now we’re looking to have a lot of cap space. So at that point in time, you want to maximize cap space, you try to project out. You get to (20)18, you can make deals to get picks going forward.”
King also spoke again on Garnett and Pierce, repeating his mantra that Garnett is “under contract until something changes,” and that he’d like to have Pierce back for two more years. “I think (Pierce) had a good year for us, and i think he’s got at least 2 year in him, as Paul said.”
The conversation inevitably turned to Miami Heat forward LeBron James, whose legs cramped up at the end of the fourth quarter in Game 1 of the NBA Finals in the fourth quarter Thursday night. James’s final bucket cut the Spurs lead to 2 late in the fourth, but with James out, the Heat faltered, losing 110-95.
King stood by James sitting out, and agreed with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra’s decision to leave him on the bench. “When you get cramps… your body’s already dehydrated,” King said. “It’s so funny. Having played against him in the playoffs, I don’t question anything that guy does. He’s carried that team all year. Without him, they’re not there.”
King also spoke on former Nets owner Lewis Katz, someone he considered a friend, calling him a “very special,” “selfless” man and shared stories of his charity and good human nature. Katz passed away last week shortly after buying the Philadelphia Inquirer. King said he’d sent Katz a congratulatory text and still has his response on the phone.
King also compared Duke forward Jabari Parker to former Nets #1 overall pick Derrick Coleman (favorably), and said there’s no going wrong picking between Parker, Andrew Wiggins, or Joel Embiid. He said the top three teams would have to look positionally to fill needs. “I don’t think you go wrong picking any one of these three, it’s got to be what you’re looking for in the draft,” King said.