Brooklyn Nets: Lessons from first 52 Games

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Jul 18, 2013; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Brooklyn Nets general manager Billy King speaks during a press conference to introduce the newest members of the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

1. Brace yourself before the February 19 Trade Deadline

GM Billy King has made it no secret that no one on the roster is untouchable (maybe with the exception of Mason Plumlee). King is actively trying to move the large contracts of Brook Lopez, Joe Johnson, and Deron Williams if he believes he can get back fair value. From previous rumors of possible Lopez and Johnson deals, it looked like the Nets were just trying to dump salary and did not even care about getting a good return. But recently, Billy King has come out and said that he is in no hurry to make a trade. Based on the Timofey Mozgov trade, a Lopez deal should bring back at least 2 first round picks (or one lottery pick), and a Johnson deal should result in young talent or solid veterans.

In addition to the Big Three on the market, Jarrett Jack may also be expendable. He has been a very good addition to the team at point guard, but may have played himself into the trade market. Contending teams would be open to adding another solid PG, for injury concerns or to upgrade the position. Trading Jack may result in the acquisition of a late first round/early second round draft pick, or some young prospects. Considering the Nets’ desire to infuse some youth onto the roster, he may be gone if another team makes a reasonable offer.

I wouldn’t be surprised if anyone on the team (not named Plumlee) is traded after the All Star break. Teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder, Los Angeles Clippers, and even the Cleveland Cavaliers are looking for additional depth. Unlike the East, the Western Conference has good teams not in the top 8 that are within striking distance. The aforementioned Thunder and New Orleans Pelicans may call up teams like the Nets for players to make a playoff push.

Next: Playoffs?