Tampering Week: Nene

Nene and Felton

After a 24-58 season, the New Jersey Nets will have to make some changes heading into 2012. This week, Nets are Scorching takes a closer look at some soon-to-be-available names.

2010-11 Stats: 75 G, 75 GS, 30.5 MPG, 14.5 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 2.0 APG, 1.0 BPG, 1.1 SPG, .615 FG%, .711 FT%, 123 ORtg, 20.49 PER

Why Billy King Should Be Texting Him Now: I love Nene. I love that he only take shots close to the basket. I love that he prioritizes team success over personal accomplishment. I love that he cares enough to play defense in the halfcourt. I love that Ian Eagle loves him enough to make a “foreign facial” every time Nene converts a dunk. I love that he displays some range at times when he’s uncontested. I love that he can defend an interior jumpshot but jump out to the perimeter to contest a jump hook or late jumper. It’s this versatility and commitment that allows an acquisition of Nene to be beneficial.

Don’t Risk the Fine: The problem with acquiring Nene is that the Nets already have a great player in Brook Lopez at center. Sure, Nene might be able to adjust to the power-forward slot while playing for the Nets, but it wouldn’t be fair to subject one particular player to positional restrictions. Should the Nets manage to acquire Nene to play alongside Brook Lopez, it might prove to be advantageous to the relevant organization.

And The Winner Is… Tamper: Barring the acquisition of certain inhuman centers who change the landscape of basketball altogether, it is worth it to pursue Nene next season. He only takes efficient shots, and he also draws offensive fouls and draws easy baskets at the hoop with his physical play. Acquiring Nene would allow the Nets to develop a poor man’s Duncan-Robinson frontcourt and dominate the paint with elite offense and defense on each side. Moving forward, there are so few actionable power forwards that making an investment to play Nene at the 4 and coexist with Lopez would be a worthy pursuit.