My Blueprint for Greatness

After the season with no moves made, the roster will look like this with the players who are free agents gone:

PG: Deron Williams ($16.36 Mil) / Jordan Farmar ($4 Mil) / Sundiata Gaines ($884,293)

SG: Anthony Morrow ($4 Mil)

SF: Travis Outlaw ($7 Mil) / Damion James ($1.24 Mil)

PF: -

C: Brook Lopez ($3.08 Mil) / Johan Petro ($3.25 Mil)

All together this adds up to $39,814,161. After the new CBA is finished the salary cap will likely stay close to the current $58 million.  This leaves $18,185,839. Billy King has already stated that this will be the big off season for them, so i expect them to spend most of the freed up money.

Looking at the Nets roster, every position either has a hole or an overpaid player thanks to Rod Thorn.  According to the things i have read, an amnesty clause is likely to happen. People would automatically jump on the chance to dump Outlaw, but i'm not so sure Petro wouldn't be a smart choice either.  To me it sounds like Outlaw is poised to show he isn't completely worthless.  However, for arguments sake lets say we dump Outlaw because he has a bigger contract, giving us an extra $7 million for free agency.

The cap space now grows to $25,185,839, with a bunch of holes to fill.  That is a tough task but its doable, and the first step is the draft.

The Draft:

I would say that our biggest needs are a wing player and a big man to use off the bench.  We should acquire the 19th pick from the Bobcats for Jordan Farmar and an undisclosed amount of Prokhorov's money. The Bobcats need a backup point guard and they have multiple picks and need money so I think they are likely to accept.  This deal not only gives us an extra pick but also frees up another $4 million in cap space.  Now with that pick and our two we already have, these are the players we should pick up:

19th pick- Kenneth Faried-  Would be a solid replacement for Kris Humphries, who I do not think we will be able to keep.  Always gives 110%, and has great rebounding skills.  Will complement Lopez's lack of rebounding and defense.  A player like this is a need for a team wanting to make the playoffs.

27th pick- Marshon Brooks-  Hopefully he is still here by now, with the way his stock is rising, but I would love to have him.  A 6'5" shooting guard with a 7'1" wingspan and ridiculous hops and a great shooting touch doesn't come along often, but I think he is being over looked because he played at Providence. Reminds me a lot od how Nick Young was this year, and we definitely need some offense.

36th pick- David Lighty-  My favorite player in the draft would be a huge help the team.  He is an experienced player who is a winner, a shut-down defender, and a guy who will do anything to win. What's not to like!  He can play/guard both wing positions, and would be a great piece for Avery Johnson, trying to establish a strong defense.  I think he could be like Ronny Brewer for the Bulls, except a better shooter. I also think he is experienced enough to be an immediate starter, which is a big help.

If the draft turned out this way I would be very happy with the addition of a premier rebounder, a lights-out scorer, and a shut-down defender.  All parts that a playoff team needs.

Free Agency:

With the money saved from the Farmar trade, the free cap room is now at  $29,185,839.  This is certainly enough to pick up a good amount of talent.

I do not think that Sasha Vujacic is worth signing to another deal, especially after picking up two similar players in  the draft.  As much as I would like to have Kris Humpries back, I think he will warrant a $7 million contract, similar to what Anderson Varejao got.  I do not think that one season of 10-10 production is worth that much after getting a cheaper version in Faried in the draft.  

I did predict that there would be a amnesty clause next year, which would open up even more free agents to sign.  However, I do not know how other teams will exercise this so I will only include players that will be definite free agents into my decision making.

First off, I think the signing of Andrei Kirilenko is inevitable.  I would expect a contract of about 3 years $18 million; which is the same salary as Mike Miller got, so that contract is likely with them being at the same age

Remaining Cap Space: $23 million

Next, we should sign Kenyon Martin.  I would really like to bring him back to Jersey and he would bring much needed defense, leadership, and toughness, as well as being able to mentor Lopez and Faried.  Sign him for 2 years $12 million; the same deal Jermaine O'Neal got.

Remaining Cap Space: $17 million

 Now, to build toward the future we should sign Marcus Thorton.  He is my favorite free agent because he can score in bunches, but also play good defense.  At only 23 years old he has plenty of room to improve, but will also command a pretty big contract because of the season that he had.  I would expect something along the lines of 5 years $40 million, which is a little more than the rediculous contract that John Salmons got.

Remaining Cap Space: $9 million

Our last need would be to sign a viable backup center, who is not Petro.  I would like to bring back Nenad Kristic, who could split time with Petro in spelling Lopez, for a cheap contract.  I would think a reasonable contract would be 2 years $6 million, which is about the contract that Petro got (LOL).

Remaining Cap space: $6 Million

One last player I want to see is Stephen Graham back.  I know no one likes him, but just as long as he does not play I think he would be great for veteran's minimum salary for his professionalism and his mentoring ability for young players.  Just the same reason that the Bulls signed Scalabrine.  I do not thinking they were planning on playing him but he is good for the locker room presence.  

Final Thoughts:

This gives a final roster as:

PG: DWill/ Gaines

SG: Thorton/ Morrow/ Brooks

SF: AK47/ Damion "The Exorcist" James/ David Lighty/ GrahaMVP

PF: K-Mart/ Faried

C: Lopez/ Kristic/ Petro

I think this could be a solid and deep team that could end up with one of the middle playoff spots, with an even balance of veterans and young players, while also leaving some cap space for the future.

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