Jeff Van Gundy: Nets have best starting 5 in NBA

On ESPN 98.7 FM Friday, Jeff Van Gundy spoke about the recent blockbuster trade that sent Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the Brooklyn Nets, saying that the deal gives the Nets the best starting lineup in the NBA.

From Tim Bontemps of the New York Post, who heard the interview:

“I think, for the short term, the Nets certainly have the best starting lineup, talent-wise, in the NBA,” Van Gundy said.

The former Knicks and Rockets coach – and current ESPN analyst – then went on to lavish praise on Nets billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov for being willing to do what Van Gundy accused many owners around the sport of not doing: not putting their pocketbooks ahead of their championship aspirations.

“I give the ownership of the Nets a lot of credit, because we always hear about luxury taxes and how they can’t afford to go over the luxury tax,” Van Gundy said. “We often hear the word “can’t” be interjected where the word “won’t” is more descriptive.

“In this case, the Nets ownership put personnel for their team way ahead of profits. And, if you’re a fan, you have to understand how rare that is and you have to be excited about the opportunity. Now, if this turns out to be a championship run or not, you have to be excited about an ownership that will put the personnel of a team ahead of the profits of that same team.”

My thoughts: Probably not the most talented, but possibly the deepest starting lineup in the NBA. Whoever you think Brooklyn’s fifth-best starter is, what team has a better fifth-best starter than that?

New York Post — ESPN’s Van Gundy: Nets have best starting lineup in NBA