For one Brooklyn Nets starter, the offseason meant time for surgery.
“Brooklyn Nets forward Dorian Finney-Smith underwent successful surgery today to correct a contracture of the right fifth finger,” read a statement released by the Nets on April 26. “The procedure was performed by Dr. Michelle Carlson at the Hospital for Special Surgery. Finney-Smith is expected to be fully cleared for offseason workouts in approximately six weeks.”
Finney-Smith, 29, appeared in games for the Nets during the regular season. Traded as part of the return package from the Dallas Mavericks for Kyrie Irving, Finney-Smith averaged 7.2 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.6 assists on .351/.306/.789 shooting splits.
In the postseason he averaged 6.3 points and 4.5 boards shooting 39.1% from the floor but did knock down 41.2% of his triples.
This was his least efficient season from behind the arc since 2017-18, his second in the league.
The veteran two-way wing is set to enter the second year of a four-year, $55.5 million contract and has been named as a potential trade target for the Memphis Grizzlies who had their sights set on Mikal Bridges but might settle for Finney-Smith at a much cheaper cost.
Dorian Finney-Smith Could Be Memphis Grizzlies Trade Target
“Look, the Nets are loaded with wings,” said ESPN NBA insider Tim MacMahon on the ‘Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective’ podcast on April 24 They’re not giving up Bridges. Sounds like they’re not gonna let Cam Johnson go. Could you get Dorian Finney-Smith for a pick? That would make sense, something like that.”
Brooklyn had offers on the table for Finney-Smith at this past trade deadline but they opted to give this group some runway.
The veteran has been realistic about the possibility that he or anyone else could be traded.
But the Nets might want to hold on to him a little bit longer just to see what the trio of Bridges Finney-Smith, and (presumably) Johnson who is a restricted free agent but has already expressed an interest in returning and is close with Bridges too.
Bridges spoke of his budding bond with his new teammates, highlighting Finney-Smith.
“Definitely was fun getting to know new guys and have new friends and all that stuff like that,” Bridges said via the Nets’ official YouTube channel on April 23 about his first season in Brooklyn. “Being around guys like Doe, and just playing against him, just complimenting him pretty much every time we played them in Dallas just saying he’s a glue guy for them and all that stuff. And then actually getting a chance to actually know him and get close with him and become friends with him. I think that’s been the best thing.”
Kyrie Irving Says Nets Would Have Won Title in 2020
As one fan on Twitter was lamenting the Milwaukee Bucks season turning when Giannis Antetkounmpo went down with a back injury, another pointed to the Nets’ own misfortune when Irving suffered an ankle injury in 2020-21 against Milwaukee. Irving sustained the injury in Game 4 and would miss the final three games of the series.
The series famously ended when Kevin Durant’s “big a** foot” was on the line, making a would-be game-winning three-pointer a game-tying two-point make. Brooklyn would go on to fall in overtime as the Bucks went on to win the champions.
According to Irving, that would not have been the case had he been healthy.
Faced with the reality that he was dealing with a hypothetical scenario, Irving had a very on-brand comeback.
“Tell that to every Sports Media show built off of “what if” scenarios and debates,” he tweeted.