Mirza Teletovic to start for Lopez, is it a long-term decision?

Mirza Teletovic, Alan Anderson, Josh Harrellson
On left: Mirza Teletovic. (AP)
Mirza Teletovic, Alan Anderson, Josh Harrellson
On left: Mirza Teletovic. (AP)

Less than a month ago, Brooklyn Nets forward Mirza Teletovic told The Brooklyn Game he wasn’t sure if he had a role with the Brooklyn Nets.

Now, in the team’s first game without Brook Lopez, Mirza Teletovic makes his way into the Brooklyn Nets starting lineup, and it looks like it’s his spot to lose.

Teletovic joins Deron Williams, Alan Anderson, Joe Johnson, and Garnett in the lineup. Kevin Garnett, a power forward for much of his career and this season, slides back to the center spot, where he’d played the majority of his minutes the last two seasons.

Kidd said that this was not a permanent decision, and that he’d make his decision about the lineup on a “day-by-day” basis.

But the Indiana Pacers are a big, bruising team; with the large & powerful David West and 7’2″ Roy Hibbert manning the power forward and center positions. “They don’t play smallball, they play Indiana Pacers basketball,” Kidd said about tonight’s opponent.

Because of that, this would’ve been a good time to try out Andray Blatche or even Reggie Evans just to counter that particular size advantage. Of all the teams in the league to start two interior players against, this would be the one.

But nope, Kidd rolled with Teletovic. That indicates that the starting spot is Teletovic’s to lose.

Teletovic was also the #1 choice in an anonymous poll conducted with The Brooklyn Game & YES Network contributors about who should replace Lopez in the starting lineup:

No matter who starts, the Nets are going to need their frontcourt players to step up more than ever to even have a shot at making the playoffs in this severely despondent Eastern Conference. But Mirza Teletovic is their best option.

Teletovic is a spot-up shooter who relies heavily on the dribble penetration of Deron Williams to create open looks from three. In 74 minutes with Williams on the court this season, Teletovic is shooting 46.4% (64.3 eFG%) while scoring 1.37 points per possession. He’s also shooting 10-21 from three (47.6%) with all ten of his threes being assisted. Of his 13 made field goals with Williams on the court, 12 of them have been assisted.

In our poll, 67% of you have advocated for Teletovic to get the starting nod.