The Brooklyn Nets came within a few inches of a berth in the Eastern Conference Finals. For most teams, that would be seen as an overwhelming success but, for a club with three legitimate superstars and off-the-charts expectations, it was a step short for Brooklyn. Granted, the Nets did finish their series against the Milwaukee Bucks with one healthy star (Kevin Durant), one limited star (James Harden) and one injured star (Kyrie Irving), but projections certainly won’t be any less demanding for Brooklyn in 2021-22.
Simply put, Brooklyn’s ceiling is higher than any team in the NBA as the offseason approaches. Health can be fickle, but the Nets deployed one of the best offenses of all-time in 2020-21, and they are devastating when operating at full strength with three stars and one of the NBA’s best shooters in Joe Harris. Brooklyn must add/maintain depth in the offseason, but they do have their own first-round pick and, after dealing Landry Shamet for Jevon Carter and No. 29, own the Sun spick as well to add to the overwhelming appeal veterans will see in looking to make a run at a championship.
Roster Needs: Health, Depth
Cam Thomas (No. 27 Overall), Grade: C+
This is a fascinating choice. Thomas is a perfectly fine value at No. 27 overall. He may even be under-drafted, depending on who you ask. The landing spot makes it interesting, though, in that the primary value of Thomas is in his scoring. In fact, that’s really his only established trait right now when you factor in his tough shot-making and easy range. The Nets don’t really “need” that aspect given their firepower, so it’s essentially a best player available bet on talent.
Day’Ron Sharpe (No. 29 Overall), Grade: B-
The Nets were rumored to be interested in Sharpe throughout the process, and this isn’t a surprise. He plays very, very hard and is an exceptional rebounder that doesn’t need the ball. That will fit in well with Brooklyn, but there are questions about his touch and lack of overall length and burst. Value-wise, this is totally fine, and it could perhaps signal (even further than already assumed) that the Nets could move on from De’Andre Jordan in favor of Nic Claxton, small-ball options and Sharpe as a developmental piece.
Alize Johnson (non-guaranteed)
2021 Free Agents
Bruce Brown (RFA)
Chris Chiozza (RFA)
Spencer Dinwiddie (UFA)
Jeff Green (UFA)
Blake Griffin (UFA)
Mike James (RFA)
Tyler Johnson (UFA)
Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (UFA)
Reggie Perry (RFA)