Results for tag: Avery Johnson
Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Sep 25, 2010 at 02:06:23 PM

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- As everyone in the NBA waits on Carmelo Anthony and the Nets, Nuggets, Bobcats and Jazz to decide whether this blockbuster will become a reality, training camp opened for New Jersey today.

Yes, Devin Harris was running the point and yes Derrick Favors was running the floor.

Will they still be around for the afternoon practice or both sessions remains to be seen, but they are the two main players the Nets are expected to move to get the high-scoring Anthony.

The deal could still break down because of all the teams, players, owners and egos involved. But if it does go through, there has been plenty of talk about whether the Nets would be giving up too much, but you have to give up something to get a top-tier player that immediately becomes the face of your franchise.

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Sep 23, 2010 at 02:04:03 PM

The first training camp of the Mikhail Prokhorov, Avery Johnson and Billy King eras starts Saturday with or without Carmelo Anthony.

The Nets would like to add the Nuggets superstar small forward and are in conversations with Denver, but they don’t want to mortgage too much of their future. They would like to hold on to rookie Derrick Favors and may need a third and perhaps a fourth team to get something done.

The Melo-drama adds some intrigue to what should be an interesting camp for a team coming off a dismal 12-win season.

The Nets have a new Russian billionaire owner, a new coach with the best regular-season winning percentage in NBA history, potentially 12 new players and 10 guys who are 25 and under.

“I’m excited, cautious but I’m optimistic,” said

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Aug 13, 2010 at 09:47:32 AM

For the first time in a long time, the Nets’ weakness won’t be power forward.

They acquired a quality big man and proven double-double performer, getting Troy Murphy from Indiana in a four-team trade that sent Courtney Lee to Houston.

Now shooting guard may be a little weaker, so it’s up to Terrence Williams and Anthony Morrow to seize the opportunity, produce and defend.

But getting Murphy – after Chris Bosh and Carlos Boozer said no in free agency – is a major upgrade at power forward where the enigmatic Yi Jianlian spent two injury-plagued seasons for the Nets. Murphy will mentor rookie Derrick Favors - who the Nets believe will be an All-Star in the future - and complement Brook Lopez in the upcoming season.

The Nets have a productive, starting-caliber

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jul 19, 2010 at 10:23:34 AM

The Nets begin the work week under new management. For the first time in 10 years, Rod Thorn isn’t the man pulling the trigger on all basketball decisions.

Thorn left the building Friday; he’s the former Nets president now. His legacy is secure after acquiring Jason Kidd and seeing the star-crossed franchise to two NBA Finals. Thorn’s legend would have been greater if he got LeBron James to choose the Nets over Miami.

Thorn wouldn’t have resigned if James picked the Nets. That wasn’t happening so Thorn and the Nets turn the page and start anew.

The Nets are now in the hands of Avery Johnson and Billy King - the two men that should lead them into Brooklyn. New owner Mikhail Prokhorov calls the shots, but he’s taking his cues now from Johnson as is King,

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jul 8, 2010 at 11:33:31 PM

The Nets shot for the moon and hoped to land some of the biggest stars in free agency. But they came crashing down to earth with nothing to show for their lofty ambitions, bravado and bluster.

Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov and part-owner Jay-Z were supposed to be two of the biggest names in this chase, but their money, power and global vision couldn’t match what Micky Arison, Pat Riley and the Miami Heat were offering.

LeBron James, Chris Bosh or Dwyane Wade chose to be teammates in Miami. The long-rumored possibility became official when James made his announcement on Thursday night.

As South Beach gets even hotter, the Nets feel a chill. It’s downright freezing in Cleveland and Toronto, though. Those two cities lost their franchise’s best players. The Nets

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 29, 2010 at 11:11:19 PM

LeBron James wants to see the Nets first. That has to mean something.

No one is saying the Nets are the frontrunners to sign James in free agency. For the longest time, most NBA experts dismissed the Nets. Only recently have you started hearing they are ahead of the Knicks and in the race. Our feeling is the Nets do have a shot at the biggest fish in the free-agent pond.

James may decide to go somewhere else like Miami or Chicago. He could stay in  Cleveland. A plausible scenario would be for James to re-sign for three years in Cleveland and then join the Nets when they’re in Brooklyn.

But the Nets shouldn’t be discounted now just because they were 12-70 or are playing in Newark for a few years or are about to lose invaluable and largely irreplaceable team president

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 25, 2010 at 12:45:06 AM

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. –- The Nets went into the NBA Draft with free agency on their mind and a big part of whatever they did. They may have taken it to the extreme.

They got a James in Thursday night’s draft and a power forward who likens himself to Amar’e Stoudemire.

Next week the Nets hope they can get the real Stoudemire and the only James that anyone has been talking about in NBA circles for the last few years.

For now, the Nets are happy to say they drafted the super athletic Derrick Favors with the No. 3 pick. They think they have a future All-Star in the Georgia Tech power forward who turns 19 in three weeks.

They also think they made a good deal in sending the No. 27 and 31 picks to the Hawks for 6-foot-7 forward Damion James. That’s up for debate. But

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 22, 2010 at 10:24:39 PM

Finding holes on a 12-70 team is like trying to find fish and birds on the Gulf Coast covered by oil -– they’re everywhere.

But the Nets filled two of their holes since the season ended. They got an owner who spends (Mikhail Prokhorov) and hired a coach who actually is a coach (Avery Johnson). They figure to fill more needs between this week and next.

The Nets are solid at center and point guard with Brook Lopez and Devin Harris, respectively. They need a power forward, small forward, backup point guard and center, shooters, guys who can defend, who rebound, competitive guys, toughness and winners.

All of that will be hard to find but the Nets have some means with three picks in Thursday's NBA Draft and roughly $26 million for free agency, starting July 1.

Dealing with the

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 15, 2010 at 06:00:32 PM

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Avery Johnson officially took over his second team today and probably sounded more optimistic running a team that lost 70 times this past season than he did when he was given the Mavericks job in 2005. And that that had won 52 games the season before.

Johnson did what he was supposed to do and what the Nets needed him to do when he took the podium today for his introductory press conference. He helped breathe life into a team that was essentially dead this past season.

Johnson made people laugh, spoke about the short- and long-term goals of the Nets and more than anything provided hope that the team is in good hands.

The truth is, the Nets are in good hands.

Billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov wants to build a dynasty and he has the cash to do it.

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 10, 2010 at 05:49:08 PM

Avery Johnson may not have been the Nets’ first choice, but might turn out to be the best choice for what they need after one of the worst seasons in NBA history.

Injuries and bad breaks led to 18 consecutive losses to start the season. A lack of coaching, leadership and accountability was why they won just 12 of their remaining 64 games after they were mostly healthy.

They lost all those things when Lawrence Frank was fired, but now have it again in Johnson, the Nets new head coach and first of the Mikhail Prokhorov era.

As a player, there was no questioning Johnson’s leadership and desire. He bounced around for most of his 16 NBA seasons, but spent a good chunk in San Antonio where he played with David Robinson and Tim Duncan and helped the Spurs to the 1999 NBA championship.