For the second straight year, NetsDaily is taking part in a big blog season preview project, organized by Jeff at CelticsBlog.com.
Over the coarse of 30 days, some 60 or so blogs will be previewing the 30 teams. Of course, our day was Tuesday, but better late than never. Without further ado, here's what we came up with...
1. What significant moves were made during the offseason?
a. Re-signed Vince Carter - He's an all-world talent, but basically, they bid against themselves for a guy who had a terrible postseason, and they still decided to give him $62 million guaranteed. What can we say? Bruce hearts Vince.
b. Signed Jamaal Magloire - He's apparently worn out his welcome with the last three teams he has played for. Maybe a (second-straight) contract year and playing with Jason Kidd will motivate him. Maybe not.
c. Drafted Sean Williams (aka Neneh Cherry)- He's a big, long athlete - exactly the type of player the Nets need - but we don't have much hope for him contributing much this season.
c. Did not trade for Kevin Garnett or Jermaine O'Neal - And Vince doesn't play power forward.
d. Let Mikki Moore leave for Sacramento - Loved what he gave us last year, but didn't love what the Kings gave him.
2. What are the team's biggest strengths?
a. Jason Kidd - He's the best point guard in the world (Canadians who don't play D don't count) and without him, this team would ... well, we just don't want to think about that.
b. Defense (sort of) - At least when they feel like playing it, which wasn't all that often last season, until they got to the playoffs.
c. Experience - The core is playoff tested. Just ask the Raptors.
d. The running game (sort of) - The aforementioned Kidd is the ultimate fast-break point and they've got one guy (Richard Jefferson) who's more than willing to be one of the guys on the wing. But of course, Vince doesn't care to be the other.
3. What are the team's biggest weaknesses?
a. Shotblocking and frontline rebounding - Their three best bigs are Nenad Krstic, Jamaal Magloire and Jason Collins, and none of the above can jump over a piece of toast. Jason Kidd has been the leading rebounder each of the last three seasons.
b. Offensive droughts - See Game 6 against Cleveland.
c. Inconsistency - See 2006-07 season.
4. What are the goals for this team?
a. NBA Finals - With as wide open as the East is, getting to the Finals ain't that unrealistic, but a lot of things would have to fall into place for that to happen. The Conference Finals would be a pretty good showing. Not making it past the first round would be a disappointment.
b. Being a top five defensive team - Running more is another goal, but in order to do that, it has to start with the D.
c. Not having a losing record on Dec. 15 -
Antoine Wright - The No. 15 pick in 2005 (we cry for David Lee) has the tools. He can defend, he has a decent jumper at times, and he can get to the basket. But he has yet to put it together as a consistent contributor. He showed some signs late last year, but confidence (Lawrence Frank's in him and his own in himself) has always been an issue. He's playing for a second contract, so if he doesn't turn it up this year, he may not get another shot.
Predicted Record: 45-37 (we've learned our lesson).