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Can Jarrett Jack make Brooklyn Nets fans forget about Shaun Livingston?


Jarrett Jack is, more or less, the forgotten man of the off-season.  With so much attention focused on the health of Brook Lopez and Deron Williams, the silence of Kevin Garnett, the departure of Paul Pierce, the emergence of Mason Plumlee and the "youth movement," Jack's acquisition hasn't gotten much attention.

But last week's announcement that the man he's replacing, Shaun Livingston, will miss six to eight weeks with yet another injury --this one a toe-- has made people think about what the Nets are getting in Jarrett Jack.  Acquiring Jack was something Jason Kidd and Billy King agreed was a priority. Kidd wanted him at the deadline, King and ownership wanted to wait till the off-season, believing, correctly as it turned out, that they could get more as the Cavs cut costs.

Now, Fred Katz of Bleacher Report gives his assessment of how Jack fits into the 2014-14 Nets picture.  "Coming off a dreadful campaign, can Jack do any of what Livingston did to help the Nets last season?" Katz asks rhetorically, then answers, "Though it may not seem obvious, yes, he can."  Or as our own Reed Wallach wrote a couple of weeks back, "Jarrett Jack, not any of the young players, may be Brooklyn's most crucial addition of the off-season."

Katz notes that last year's stats should be taken with a grain of salt, one named Mike Brown.  Katz notes that Jack played "within a Mike Brown offense that lent itself to overdribbling galore with its guards."  There were also reports that Jack and Kyrie Irving didn't along.

Put all that aside, writes Katz, and focus instead on the two years immediately prior to last season, the one in 2011-12 when he finished third in the Sixth Man of the Year voting and 2012-13 when he averaged 17.2 points and 4.7 assists in 12 games --eight of them off the bench. He hasn't suffered any injury since and is only 30.

Which Jack shows up in November could be crucial for the Nets season.