The Brooklyn Nets have some decisions to make this offseason with their roster as a good chunk of players are free agents.
Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant appear to be locks for coming back, but the team around them is up in the air. With Ben Simmons never getting healthy enough to join the team, Bruce Brown sort of turned into the de-facto third option, and he flashed some good moments.
He’s far from a superstar, but he’s proven he can play a specific role on a team and play it well. Brown is an unrestricted free agent this summer, and he’s likely to get plenty of interest from around the league thanks to his ability to play several roles.
The former second round pick is just 25 years old, so his best days are certainly ahead of him. One NBA executive tells Heavy.com’s Sean Deveney the Boston Celtics could make a run for him this offseason, and losing him would be a big blow to the Nets.
Celtics Snagging Brown
After the Celtics swept the Nets in the first round, they dispatched the defending champs Milwaukee Bucks and now find themselves in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat.
On the surface the Celtics don’t have a ton of weaknesses, but there are still improvements that can be made. Bruce Brown would fit their system, and a lot of that comes down to head coach Ime Udoka, somebody who spent time with him in Brooklyn.
They will have limited resources,” said the executive. “But they are going to look at guys who can defend. I would not be surprised if they make a pitch for Bruce Brown. He might be out of their price range in the end and maybe he goes back to Brooklyn, but Ime (Udoka) was an assistant there and we’ve seen that carries some weight with who they bring in. He was good in that Celtics series. If he can’t get a big offer, they could sneak in with him on a one-and-one (one year, with a player option) deal and put him to good use.”
Brown has seemed to enjoy his time with the Nets playing alongside Durant and Irving, so he might not be interested in leaving. Since the Celtics can’t offer him a massive deal, Brown would have to take a smaller contract with them if he wants to leave Brooklyn. If the Celtics end up winning the championship, then maybe they could entice him even more to jump ship.
Brown is Improving
Brown has developed into a pesky defender over the course of his short career split between Detroit and Brooklyn, and there’s no reason to suspect that won’t continue.
After playing mostly in the back court to start his career, Nash moved Brown to forward this past season and he seemed more comfortable there. He got easy baskets cutting to the basket and he even shot over 40 percent on his three pointers this past season, albeit he only took 1.3 a game.
If he can start hitting threes with consistency and play good defense, Brown will continue to be a serviceable NBA player with the Nets, Celtics or whoever decides to hand him a big contract.