At first, we tried the Heat model of building a superteam, using our superstar to lure other superstars. That faded once Dwight waived his ETO. We can't use the OKC model since we traded away our draft pick this year. The only way we can use the OKC model is if we get a top 3 pick this year AND a top 2 pick next year (because of protections). You can't do the OKC model with just one high lottery pick. They picked Durant at 2, Green at 5 in 2007, Westbrook 4th in 2008, and Harden 3rd in 2009. If Deron leaves, the closest model to the Nets situations is the Cavaliers model. After LeBron left them high and dry, they spent the next season in the NBA basement, got a 4th round pick out of it. Additionally, they traded for the Clippers 1st round pick which turned out to be the #1 overall by absorbing Baron Davis's albatross contract. If we get really lucky this year, the Nets could improve on that model. Here's how:
The most guaranteed asset the Nets have this summer is their cap space. Most teams with albatross contracts are contending teams, i.e teams with bad draft picks. However, there are two teams with TWO bad contracts and a chance at a high lottery pick: Detroit Pistons (Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva) and the Golden State Warriors (Richard Jefferson, Andres Biedrins). The Golden State Warriors pick would go to the Jazz if it was outside of the top 7. Would either of these two teams be willing to trade away their pick to save more than $40 million over the course of the next two years? I think so. And since the players aren't good enough to push us to the playoffs, we'd probably be looking at another lottery pick next year. It would shave a year or two of the rebuild.