The New Jersey Nets have acquired or resigned eight players on their current roster. As the midway point of the season approaches, it is time to analyze how well those transactions have panned out. Untimely injuries have plagued the Nets all year long resulting in a lowly 8-21 record. Let's break down by positions at how well the new Nets have performed.
Mehmet Okur was brought in as a Brook Lopez replaced as the center was expected to miss 4-6 weeks. Okur seemed like the perfect choice for New Jersey. After all, he was Deron Williams's teammate for 5 ½ seasons in Utah. The two are very good friends, and Okur was even in Turkey during Williams's stint in Turkey during the lockout. Okur brings a similar skill set as Lopez, a big man with a decent post game, who can rebound and knock down shots from the perimeter.
Unfortunately Okur is coming off a season where he only played 13 games and it seems that his low durability has played a role this season as well. He has only been able to play in 17 games due to ongoing problems with his back. Acquired four days before the season started, Okur has had very time to get acclimated to the new system. His career scoring average is 13.5 points, but is only averaging 7.6 (on .374 shooting) and has scored in double figures only six times.
Shelden Williams at 6'9" and 250 lbs was the first player the Nets signed in the offseason and was brought to add some toughness and girth to New Jersey's frontcourt. Nicknamed "The Landlord" Williams is known to many as Mr. Candace Parker and a typical draft bust. Drafted 5th out of Duke (where his jersey is retired) overall in the 2006 draft ahead of Brandon Roy and Rudy Gay, Williams has created a career being a solid role player. This year Williams is playing the most minutes a game than any other point in his career. He has started 11 games, but in all his starts the Nets have only won twice.
Lost in a summer being known as Mr. Kim Kardashian, Kris Humphries returned to the Nets for $8 million on a one-year contract. After having a breakout season last year, Humphries is registering career highs in points (13) and rebounds (10.4). He also ranks 8th in rebounds among league leaders. At 18.2 his player efficiency rating is higher than Nene's (16.5).
Shawne Williams crossed the Hudson River to join the Nets from the New York Knicks compliment Anthony Morrow's 3-point shooting. Williams has been bothered by a shin injury all year that he said needs surgery after the season is over. After shooting 40 percent from beyond the arc last year, Williams is shooting a career low from the field at .286 and only .241 from three.
Jordan Williams was drafted 36th overall in last year's draft. He was sent down to the D-League for 6 games where he averaged 10.5 points and 7.8 rebounds. In games where Williams has played 15 minutes or more he is averaging 9.2 points and 5.4 rebounds while shooting 55 %.
Keith Bogans is out for the rest of the season after suffering a torn ligament and fractured ankle in his left leg just eight after signing with the team. He's averaging 4.2 points and 2.2 rebounds.
Many people were surprised after DeShawn Stevenson decided to sign with the Nets after winning a championship with the Dallas Mavericks last season. Stevenson has the reputation of stopping LeBron James better than the fourth quarter. He has provided New Jersey with solid perimeter defense, but a bum knees has caused Stevenson to miss 8 games. Offensively he is shooting a career low .274 from the field. Also he has only attempted 3 2-point field goals this year.
Rookie and fan favorite MarShon Brooks maybe the only bright spot for the Nets this season. Brooks is averaging 14 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists this season and is a candidate for Rookie of the Year. After scoring 20 points or more in five games, Brooks is second on the team in scoring. Recently Brooks has been selected to represent the Nets in the Rising Stars Challenge in this year's All-Star weekend.
While New Jersey's signings this season haven't panned out as well as most have hoped, everyone knows it's who signs in Brooklyn this summer is what really matters.