I've been on this website for a few years now. I became a recent member because of the comments and posts I have seen being made. I feel the need to establish one thing and that is Kris Humphries role on the Nets.
So many times on this website I have seen questions about Humphries being the future of the Nets PF, questions about Humphries' potential, and also unlimited comparisons to proven NBA players/stars (ex: Zach Randolph, Nene and David West).
1) Humphries is NOT the future of the Nets. The Nets will NEVER win an NBA title with Kris Humphries the starting PF. He lacks size 6'9" for a pf is average at best and by no means dominant. To compliment Lopez's abilities offensively and defensively (or lack there of for the latter), the Nets need to bring in a defensive minded player (more than just a scrappy physical player) such as a Serge Ibaka. The Nets simply need more then a rebound impaired center who forgot how to play defense as quick as he did rebounding, and a decently defensive PF (Hump received ZERO votes for DPOY) who gains rebounds due to scrappy play and good fundamentals. Don't get me wrong that is essential to a championship team, but that quality talent is best suited off the bench. The problem is, will benching Hump cause him to lose his intensity and energy?
2) Humphries definitely has some potential. The question is how much or how little. He was a lottery pick (14th overall to the Jazz in the 2004 draft), and is still just 25 so there clearly is some room to improve. The problem is Hump has been in the league 6 years and has proven himself to be even useless as a role player until this year- a contract year nonetheless. Hump provides much needed energy to the Nets roster of incompetent players. With Deron, Hump can definitely put up some decent scoring numbers, but look at his past, he has career averages of 5.6 and 4.7 points and reb. The only reason i say there is more room for improvement is because of how poorly he has done in the past, there is no reason to assume he cannot do better. People in the past have looked to his numbers with Deron and claimed 15-12 is Hump's potential. I beg to differ and say that Deron, being a top 3 pg in the league, has the ability to make anybody's #s inflated this extreme. Clearly Hump can do better but to think he can be a 15-12 guy after one year of just barely recording 10-10 is unrealistic. One year of production does not prove anything except showing what he can do when he tries. Who is to say that when he signs a fat contract he will continue to play with the same motivation and energy?
3) Humphries = Udonis Haslem. Hump's stat line: 10.0 10.4 for pts reb respectively. Haslem's 8.0 and 8.2 are not as good but as close as somebody comparing Hump to David West, or even more comically Zach Randolph, who have proven to be consistent all stars year in and out and score between 5-12 more points then Hump, and proven to lead or co-lead good teams. Haslem's, 6-8 230, is almost identical to Humphries who stands at 6-9 235. While so far everything points to Hump as a better player, one must consider Humphries is in a contract year, had yet to prove himself, and has arguably the best PG in the league to go along with a rebound-less center. Anybody who claims Hump to be a better offensive player cannot disagree that his offensive numbers were inflated by Deron's arrival. On top of this, Humphries has produced a double double for one year! People make it seem like he has done this year in and year out. His career averages are 5.6 and 4.7 compared to Haslem, who has proven himself, 10.0 and 8.1. Haslem has started in years past but is much more suitable as a role player to a more well rounded PF. One more thing to consider, Haslem gets paid 4mil this year on the Heat. When they signed him it was for him to start while Bosh played C. Hump next year will be getting paid 7-9 mil for one years production, when Haslem has proven himself for more years with similar numbers. It is not unreasonable to assume Hump will preform close to the way Haslem has for the heat in the past. If anybody saw game 2 of the eastern finals, this is not a bad comparison, and is not meant to be an insult to Humphries ability, rather a realistic comparison if not a compliment. Haslem and Hump are simply scrappy hustle players who fight for every possession. Haslem has done this year in and year out, Hump on the other hand has only done this for one year (a contract year nonetheless). This gives me suspicion that we should automatically give him 8mil, instead of first finding guys to build around so we don't get stuck building around role players like Hump. Point is, Hump should be taking a pay cut to be with us so we can gain better players, similar to how Haslem did, rather then us overpaying him and suffocating our cap space.
3) Brook Lopez: Starting chandler at C gives lopez the freedom to focus offensively. It also gives the Nets a lot of size they currently lack. Lopez can play defense effectively, but gets exposed by more physical and stronger opponents (ex. every time the Nets play the Magic and Howard). Lopez is clearly not a center if he can only scramble up a pathetic 6.1 rebounds. I've heard all the excuses for his embarrassing rebound sum, but the truth is that 6 rebounds is not enough. Not to say Lopez cannot rebound more, because he has proven he can get 8+ a night, but he can work on his rebounding against smaller PF's. Just because Brook is 7'0'' does not automatically make him a Center. Teams do not fear him in the post and players consistently drive past the Nets awful backcourt without fear of Hump nor Lopez. True centers deliver a presence in the post.
4) Solution to the frontcourt: As i said above the nets should acquire a defensive minded player. Such players can be provided through FA with guys like Tyson Chandler. Chandler's stat line 10.5 9.4 and 1.1 for pts reb and blk's respectively, are very similar to Hump's 10.0 10.4 1.1 line. By making Chandler the center, backing him up with a draft pick, the nets can move Lopez to Pf and have Hump back him up. This idea generates great size the nets did not have in the past and allows them to open up Lopez's offensive game on smaller defenders. This solution is unprobable due to Lopez's size, but will allow the Nets to have a similar frontcourt (Chandler, Lopez, Hump) of teams like the Lakers (Bynum, Gasol, Odom) and the Mavs (Chandler, Dirk, Haywood). With this move and the likely addition of a suitable SF gives the Nets roster that looks like:
Morrow/Draft (hopefully Mayo too)
AK47/Damion James/Outlaw (assuming he cannot be dumped)
This roster is a blueprint for success. All the Nets need to do is acquire a capable scoring athletic SF/SG. Other than that this gives the Nets plenty of size, defense and post presence. This is not the answer to all of the Nets problems, but it certainly would address some key issues in a cheap effective manner. I am not saying this is enough for Deron to stay, but hopefully these also aren't the only players the Nets acquire. I hope they can land OJ Mayo, but I have a feeling if they wanted to make a deal with us, or if management wanted OJ, we would have done it already. Hopefully this isn’t the case and we are still waiting. If Dwight Howard is landed, and by all means this would be a miracle more then destiny, my plan can still be looked at seriously. Chandler would backup Howard, Lopez would be gone, so we would need to acquire another PF who plays like Howard except doesn’t demand the ball as much offensively. This is necessary to take the pressure off Howard defensively, while we would still have plenty of offensive help in the backcourt.