The Brooklyn Nets have had a busy offseason. Some expected the team to entertain rumors for Ben Simmons after the All-Star was unable to make his Nets debut after being dealt to the team at the trade deadline. Then Kyrie Irving had a publicly messy contract negotiation with the team that culminated with them letting Irving seek his own sign-and-trade partners but with the Los Angeles Lakers as the only team interested but were unable to get anything done, Irving elected to return for the final year on his contract with the Nets. Just after Irving chose to stay, Durant requested to be traded from the Nets, and that was a roller coaster as well filled with ultimatums and eventually a rescinded request.
While the Nets were busy with Durant and Irving discussions, they also made moves to add players to their roster. They traded for the Utah Jazz three-and-d forward Royce O’Neale. They also added TJ Warren and Edmond Sumner from the Indiana Pacers while re-signing Patty Mills, Nic Claxton, and Kessler Edwards. They faced key departures with Bruce Brown and Andre Drummond but still put together a solid offseason. One of the moves for the Nets has been getting pretty widespread praise.
TJ Warren Nets’ Best New Weapon
In an August 31, Bleacher Report article, Warren was named the Nets’ ‘Best New Weapon‘ ahead of the 2022-23 NBA season.
The Nets were able to add Pacers free agent TJ Warren in a veteran minimum deal this offseason. Warren only appeared in four games for the Pacers last season, but in the season before that, the forward averaged 19.8 points while shooting over 40 percent from three point range and grabbing 4.2 rebounds per game. Warren famously had a 50-point game in the NBA bubble and brings a significant scoring threat to the Nets.
Adding Warren as a scorer helps take some of the pressure off of the Brooklyn second unit and Durant and Irving having to do a bulk of the work. He also brings a forward that the Nets desperately needed. Last season Brooklyn’s playoff rotation only consisted of Bruce Brown as a forward. Goran Dragic, a point guard, found himself getting extended playoff minutes as a forward before Blake Griffin saw increased minutes in games three and four. So a player that can create his own shot aside from the Nets’ big three is a big addition.
Other Nets Additions
Warren isn’t the only Nets addition that is expected to make an impact. Adding Royce O’Neale from the Utah Jazz for a first round pick also brings extra depth to the Nets roster. O’Neale can defend four positions and can be a stopper to defend the opposing team’s best player. O’Neale can also hit shots from deep, and playing on a team with Durant, Irving, and Simmons will likely open things up for him.
Markieff Morris is the latest addition for Brooklyn and brings a needed veteran presence. It’s not clear where Morris will fit in for the Nets rotation or how he returns from injury, but he does bring something the Nets need with grit and toughness.