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Vegas Win Total Projection: 32.5 (VegasInsider.com)
A couple of years ago, this team was trying to compete with the East's best by acquiring veterans Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and combining them to their already star-studded roster. After wagering a lot of their future on these veterans, it didn't pan out and your looking at a team that's trying to rebuild. Could they shock people? Of course, but realistically,they are looking at 30 wins at best probably. With the addition of Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, resigning Brook Lopez, and getting rid of Plumlee, I don't see much depth or improvement yet, but it should be an interesting team to watch.
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I think Brook Lopez, as long as he's healthy will give this team 20 and 10 almost every night. There is not many other offensive options on this team, either too young or too old to really see another proven player like Lopez on this team. The problem with Lopez is health, if he can play 60-70 games this season, he'll be a good option at center. He's an offensive center, doesn't play much defense, but in terms of fantasy, his lack of defensive play makes up for itself on the offensive side of the ball. Still only 27, this is where most players enter the primes of their careers, I could see this for Lopez. Averaging 18 and 8 for his career, I see his numbers moving up to 20 and 10 based on the players and team around him.
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is going to be a good NBA talent. But lets settle our expectations on him. While he looked good in Summer League, he still has a lot of work to do to get relative fantasy numbers. His jump shooting needs to be greatly improved and he'll be playing in a good group of small-forwards consisting of Joe Johnson, Thaddeus Young, and himself. If they are out of the playoff hunt early in the season, I would expect to see Hollis-Jefferson's minutes and numbers increase as the Nets look to build for the future.
Look for Bargnani to fill in for Lopez when and if he gets injured. He'll be a great value if they give Lopez breaks or if he gets his nagging injuries again. Only 29 years of age, he averaged almost 15 points and 5 rebounds last season on the Knicks. I can expect to see him get close to the same if Lopez is out of the fold. Even with Lopez, he still may see significant time on the court if the Power Forward position isn't producing.
I have always been a big fan of Jarrett Jack, I just like the way he plays. On this Nets team, they'll look for him to be the leader and point guard of this team. He's a great distributor, with a high basketball IQ. Last season, he played about 28 minutes a night, I can expect to see similar numbers this season with only Shane Larkin taking some of the reps at point guard. Jack averages 11 points and about 5 assists and he'll get you a steal or two. Not staggering numbers, but he won't cost much and he's consistent.
The Nets averaged about 98 points per game, while allowing 100.9, I think both these numbers will end up being similar this season. I don't think they realistically have a good shot to make the playoffs, but in the East, who knows. I have a feeling they will get close to 30 wins and look to build towards the future.