Ever since Dwight Howard waived his ETO, most people have (once again) lost hope for this franchise. They (and I) believed that D12 along with D-Will would make this team an instant contender. Now that this option isn't very realistic anymore (despite many interesting conspiracies sprouting out), many believe that we need a definite answer/direction for the franchise (such as rebuild, or trade for another star). However, I claim that the Nets already have set themselves in an amazing position.
Obviously, the current roster has been depleted with injuries. We also have many players that will not be here after the season.
As you all know, this is how a healthy Nets roster would look today (+8 wins if we had this from the start?):
SG: MarShon Brooks - Anthony Morrow - Deshawn Stevenson
If we bring back the core guys, our roster would look like this:
C: Brook Lopez - Johan Petro (at least he expires)
PF: Kris Humphries - Jordan Williams
SF: Gerald Wallace - Gerald Green
SG: MarShon Brooks - Anthony Morrow
PG: Deron Williams
As you can see, we will need a third and fourth big man after Lopez and Humphries. Bringing in Chris Kaman (7-8M) via free agency would be a great acquisition. Then we can use the MLE (5-6M) on a scoring big looking to win like Antawn Jamison (19/6 this year). Teams won't look to overpay for the 35 year old. For the minimum, we can sign any quick PG (such as TJ Ford). After bringing in Kaman, Lopez can be signed for any amount he wants. This would leave us with:
Brook Lopez - Chris Kaman - Johan Petro
Kris Humphries - Antawn Jamison - Jordan Williams
Gerald Wallace - Gerald Green
Marshon Brooks - Anthony Morrow
Deron Williams - TJ Ford
Rolling into next season, the team above would be tough to beat. That's definitely better than today's Pacers, and they hold the 5th seed at 25-17. We'd have multiple guys who can rebound (Kaman, Humphries, Wallace), create for others (D-Will, Brooks, Ford), create their own shot (D-Will, Brooks, Green), score on the inside (Lopez and Jamison), and defend the interior (Kaman and Humphries).
Gerald Wallace can slow down the opposing team's best scorer. Brooks will be much improved on both ends of the floor. Our bench would be tough. D-Will will have the occasional offensive explosion. If Green plays half as well as he is now, that would be great. The room exception can be used to bring in another defender.
These moves work cap-wise, assuming we can sign Kaman before matching Brook Lopez. To my knowledge, our cap holds (Lopez, Humphries) wouldn't stop us from making these types of moves.
We don't need another superstar. Just use the cap wisely and stay healthy. Most importantly, adopt a defensive mindset. Perhaps you don't agree with my off-season acquisitions, but this is the bottom line: minor moves and good health will bring us around the top in the East. We'll even forget about Dwight.