Brooklyn Nets: Losing Spencer Dinwiddie is going to teach us a lot about this team

Brooklyn Nets. Spencer Dinwiddie (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Brooklyn Nets. Spencer Dinwiddie (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

The Brooklyn Nets are about to be without emerging star Spencer  Dinwiddie for at least a few weeks. This is a big loss for the team and we are about to learn a whole lot about them.

The Brooklyn Nets are on a roll and currently sit in the fast lane to the NBA playoffs that is in large part due to Spencer Dinwiddie‘s emergence as a significant player.

However, it is being reported that Dinwiddie could miss time due to a finger injury, significant time too.

Aside from the fact that the wins and losses are really starting to count now that the NBA season has hit January, the Nets are also down plenty of other talent. Most notably Caris LeVert.

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The Dinwiddie loss is even bigger than the LeVert loss. LeVert was leading the Nets in scoring at the time of his injury, but he is still trying to become what Spencer is now in getting better each year.

Also, the Nets were not quite ready to be where they are now the first few months of the season.

With LeVert, who got hurt in November, the Nets were suffering from character building losses and still developing as a team.

The first few games after LeVert’s injury were rough and in the middle of a losing streak.

The biggest reasons why the Nets were able to get over that hump in the season to be three games over .500 now and in a playoff spot is because of D’Angelo Russell and Dinwiddie.

Now, the Nets are about to face their biggest test yet.

Dinwiddie is the guy who plays like the new NBA he heaves up a lot of threes and makes them count.

While he is not the best three-point shooter on the team statistically, that would be Joe Harris, Dinwiddie is still the go-to guy beyond the arc with the game on the line.

Now, he will be gone and the Nets’ bench just got a whole lot worse because of it.

What the Nets lose with Dinwiddie is not only another threat, but a well-balanced game. He is probably one of the team’s top three players.

He is in the top three on the team in points per game and assists per game. Of all the players who have played in 40 games or more, he ranks fourth in FG% too.

In 49 games played, Dinwiddie has scored less than 10 points just six times all year. He is the team’s best bench player and his loss will be felt.

Just watching the game you can see how Dinwiddie makes everyone better in a charismatic type of way.

During the team’s current five game win streak Dinwiddie has scored, eight, 33, 20, 11, and 20 points respectively.

In the 10 games this season when Dinwiddie has scored 25 points or more, the Nets have lost just one of them in November to the Sixers.

Dinwiddie might be a ball hog type player who misses a lot of shots, but he still heaves them and makes them count.

When he is a threat coming off the bench it opens endless doors for the Nets.

What losing Dinwiddie does is open that aforementioned door for D’Angelo Russell.

Russell is playing like an All-Star player and has been the team leader in points and assists for a while now.

Without Dinwiddie as a threat, he is going to have to do a better job. Whether that means playing better with Joe Harris, or being smarter with the ball, he is in control now.

Russell needs to continue to be a threat and take on the higher attention he will now receive.

Overall, the Nets might be just fine without Dinwiddie. They play for each other and are not built around the health and success of one player.

But, having Dinwiddie sure as heck helps. It’s like you do not need specific sneakers to run, but they make you faster and they help.

That’s what it is with Dinwiddie. The Nets might experience a slight setback, like the one when LeVert went down, but they will come back around.

But, that says more about Head Coach Kenny Atkinson and General Manager Sean Marks‘ ability to build and coach a deep team than it does Dinwiddie.

Either way, losing Dinwiddie is about to teach us a whole lot about the Nets.

Is this going to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back?

Can D’Angelo be the only player the Nets need to win games late?

Will the offense go stagnant without the bench threat?

We will shortly find out those answers, but this is for sure an integral, ill-timed part of the season to find out.

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Only the Nets get this unlucky. A million steps forward to try to win the race just to get tackled feet before the finish line.