The NBA trade deadline is rapidly approaching, this Thursday and the Nets have issues of concern that general manager Sean Marks will need to address. While everyone is focusing on the James Harden saga, the Nets are still lacking shooters, playmakers, and dependable bigs in their everyday rotation.
Having lost eight games in a row, the Nets find themselves sliding down the standings rapidly with little sign of slowing the skid. They’ve dropped down to seventh and currently occupy a play-in-round spot.
While the most important thing will be getting their guys healthy for a championship run, the Nets have several areas they should address through trades and/or the buyout market. Below is look at a few targets that the Nets could go after before 3 p.m. on Thursday.
This is the trade scenario that just about everyone is watching. The details are well documented so it’s not worth spending too much time on. The only way this trade happens is if the Nets decide to move on from James Harden and the deal would have to include Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, and either Matisse Thybulle or Tyrese Maxey. However, all the rumors state the 76ers do not want to give that much up for Harden.
REPORT: The Sixers will not include Tyrese Maxey in any deals with the Nets for James Harden, via @therealmikekb.
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) February 5, 2022
Hypothetically, let’s say the trade went through and Brooklyn acquired Simmons, Curry, and Tyrese Maxey, the Nets would have handled a majority of their weaknesses. Curry brings shooting, Simmons can be a playmaker and a defensive anchor, while Tyrese Maxey is an explosive young player with a ton of upside that can help replenish the assets they lost trading for Harden.
There are a lot of what-ifs with the Harden trade and as of right now the Nets’ public plans do not involve trading away the third member of their “Big 3.”
Reporter: "It sounded like you guys are not trading James Harden."
Steve Nash: "Yes, that's correct." pic.twitter.com/SJcOfDElYk
— Nets Videos (@SNYNets) February 6, 2022
Rumors started heating up that Marks called the Detroit Pistons about their talented 27-year-old wing.
Report: Brooklyn Nets have ‘poked around’ at the idea of trading for Jerami Grant https://t.co/2Pf5nTnhs3
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) February 7, 2022
Grant could slide into the role Kessler Edwards has been playing for the Nets as a 3-and-D, but Grant hasn’t been knocking down the three at a high enough clip this season. He is a career 34.6% three-point shooter and is shooting 33.8% this season for the Pistons.
Making roughly $20 million the Nets would have to be willing to part ways with Joe Harris to make the financials of the deal work and attach a young asset like Cam Thomas or Nic Claxton.
Ross is a very intriguing possibility for the Nets for multiple reasons. He is an older player on the lowly Orlando Magic, who should be moved before the deadline.
Making an average of $13.5 million, the Nets could easily salary match with a combination of either Bruce Brown, Jevon Carter, and a minimum player. Or they could use their Traded Player Exception (TPE) from Spencer Dinwiddie. It should be noted that Bruce Brown has a no-trade clause.
As for the basketball fit, Ross is a freakishly athletic guard who can finish above the rim and shoot the ball. He is a career 35% shooter from three.
Ross could slide perfectly into a bench scoring role for the Nets and keep floor spacing for their trio of superstars.
Terrence Ross showin' off the bounce 🚀 pic.twitter.com/6EgzzLfx8v
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) October 7, 2021
Lamb is in a similar situation as Ross.
He plays for an Indiana Pacers team that should be a seller at the deadline and he makes $10.5 million, so the money is no issue.
Brown or Carter would get you there if the Nets didn’t want to use the TPE.
Lamb would address the lack of shooting the Nets have coming off the bench since he is a career 34.4% shooter from three. He is having a very down year with the Pacers, averaging career lows in many statistical categories and could really benefit from a change of scenery in Brooklyn.
Jeremy Lamb beat the Raptors … AGAIN 😮 pic.twitter.com/ArP6zp9eLl
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) April 6, 2019
Bullock is another player that could use a change of scenery and could help the Nets with some of their current issues. It is another situation where the financials of it won’t be an issue with Bullock making $10 million.
Carter and Brown can get you there without using the TPE.
Bullock kills two birds with one stone as he is a big who can rebound, while also shooting the lights out of the ball from deep. Last game he shot 6-of-10 from three, while scoring 22 points and ripping 9 rebounds in a Mavericks win.
He is a career 39% three-point shooter while averaging right around 3 rebounds per game.
In addition to the shooting, Bullock is a hard-nosed player who could fit the Nets’ defensive scheme of switching everything.
Reggie BulLOCK 🔒 pic.twitter.com/RRIZxUlTkN
— Mavs / Magic Draft (@MavsDraft) February 6, 2022
Harrison Barnes/Buddy Hield
Barnes or Hield are more of a longshot as the Kings would have to be willing to take on Joe Harris contract, which is the only way to make the salary match. The Nets would probably also have to include a young asset for the Kings, whether it is Nic Claxton or Cam Thomas. The Nets would only be interested in this move if Harris’ ankle is not going to be healed in time to help contribute to a championship push.
Barnes and Hield are both prototypical 3-and-D guys who can knock down a catch and shoot shot, while playing defense. Barnes already has an NBA title to his name during his time with the Warriors. During which he was guarding the opposition’s best players and contributing to the offense.
Barnes has been tremendous for the Kings the last two seasons, averaging 16 points with nearly 50/40 splits with 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Hield is more of a shooter, shooting over 40% from three multiple seasons in his career, but has fallen out of favor with the Kings due to young players coming in.
Hield has only started a career-low 6 out of 55 games this season and saw his minutes diminish from 34 to 28 per game.
Schroder was one of the most interesting players this past offseason for turning down a massive extension from the Lakers, but it just has not panned out the way he hoped it would. He ended up signing a 1-year, $5.8 million deal with the Boston Celtics and they should be open to moving him since they do not have his “Bird Rights.”
Although the Nets might have to give up one of their young players if Brown’s defensive abilities don’t interest the Celtics, Schroder can be the 6th man Brooklyn has been lacking the last two seasons.
He is a prototypical point guard who can get his own shot and create for his teammates. Schroder can also serve as an insurance policy in Kyrie Irving can’t play at home.
He is a career 34% three-point shooter while averaging nearly 14 PPG and 5 APG.
The Celtics are “widely expected” to trade Dennis Schröder before the NBA’s trade deadline next week. (via @TheSteinLine)
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) January 31, 2022
The Nets are most likely not going to make a big splash since they have very limited assets to trade due to the Harden deal and they had to unload four second-round picks to get rid of DeAndre Jordan. With that being said, if they don’t trade James Harden, several smaller trades to address shooting and playmaking off the bench are very much on the table.
Buckle up for the next three days, it is going to be wild across the entire NBA.