The results of this coming offseason for the Brooklyn Nets could be the franchise’s defining moment. Despite having Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, and James Harden on their roster for the better part of the last two seasons, the Nets still have yet to make it past the second round of the playoffs. Once the 2022 season ends, the Nets will have several players from this year’s roster scheduled to hit the free-agent market. Brooklyn will have to make some tough decisions on who will make the cut on the 2023 roster and also brainstorm on which new players they need to bring in to fill the appropriate voids. Grant Hughes of “Bleacher Report” suggests that they bring in Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby.
“Skill is enjoying a real renaissance these days as NBA teams try to get as much shooting, passing, and defense onto the floor as possible. But as long as the basket remains 10 feet above the floor, size will always matter. The Brooklyn Nets just don’t have enough, and that may still be true if Ben Simmons returns to the court and Joe Harris is healthy after missing nearly all of 2021-22 with ankle trouble,” Hughes writes per “Bleacher Report”.
“Too often during its short playoff run Brooklyn leaned on lineups that featured three of its four small guards: Kyrie Irving, Patty Mills, Goran Dragic, and Seth Curry. Anunoby is a five-position defender with supreme physical strength and the bulky 6’7″ frame teams covet. He and Simmons could wreak havoc on D and ensure the Nets don’t find themselves at such a size disadvantage in next year’s playoffs.”
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Anunoby ‘Dissatisfied’ With His Role in Toronto
Anunoby is a solid offensive threat as he averaged a career-high 17.1 points per game last season. But where he thrives is on the defensive end increasing his rebounds, steals, and blocks per game in each of his first four seasons. But despite his upward trajectory, rumors have swirled about a potential trade, as he has become unsatisfied with his role on the Raptors.
“Per [Bleacher Report’s] Jake Fischer, “Word has circulated among rival front offices that Anunoby grew dissatisfied at times with his role in Toronto this past season. That’s a start. Toronto is long on wings and forwards but could use backcourt playmakers and a more conventional center,” Hughes continued.
“The Nets could build a sign-and-trade package including restricted free agent Nic Claxton, picks, and a couple of guards. Anunoby will have loads of suitors if he hits the market, but the Nets could at least post a decent offer.”
Anunoby Could Take Nets Young Core to Next Level
Nets general manager Sean Marks and the front office have assembled a decent coop of young talent. Rookies such as Cam Thomas, Kessler Edwards, and Day’Ron Sharpe played significant minutes for the Nets last season. At 24 years old, Anunoby could be the latest addition to Brooklyn’s young core. While the Nets have affirmed time and again, that they want to win a championship sooner than later, having a young group of talent headlined by Anunoby isn’t the worst thing in the world.
If Brooklyn doesn’t secure a title during the Kyrie and KD era, they could get another crack at it with the next generation, depending on how their rookies develop.