In answers to questions posed by NetsDaily fans, Mikhail Prokhorov talks about how " very glad" he is to work with Billy King, offers skepticism about analytics, says he expects the Nets new D-League team to "launch" in 2016 and jokingly (we think) suggests a new mascot.
NetsDaily asked seven fans to come up with questions and submitted them to Prokhorov. There were no restrictions on the type of questions. Prokhorov, dressed in a Nets sweatshirt, answered all the questions we submitted in a video entitled "Mikhail's Mailbag Extravaganza."
In answering the question on his level of confidence in Billy King, the Nets owner said he was "very glad" to be working with the Nets often criticized GM.
Prokhorov started off by noting, "I bet Billy will be listening to the answer to this" then added...
"Joking aside, I am very glad to be working with Billy. He has managed to pull off a lot of unexpected deals in line with the guidance that ownership has given him. I think we had an excellent off-season this year and I do believe that it will bring success this season."
Prokhorov was silent on the second part of the question from Dennis in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, on whether he will extend King, whose contract runs out after this season.
In much the same vein, Prokhorov denied that marketing trumped basketball in building the Nets in Brooklyn. In an answer to a question from Andrew in San Francisco, Prokhorov stated...
"We didn't bring in star players for brand awareness. But for a person who signed off on all these deals, I can say, the only thing I care about is building a winning team. And I do believe we had a fair shot with all these trades. It didn't work out because sport isn't predictable. That's why we love it, but I can fairly say our focus remains absolutely the same today."
Prokhorov also expressed some skepticism about analytics to Brian in Canarsie, Brooklyn ... and said he expects the Nets new D-League team to start up next season.
"I think analytics are becoming more and more refined throughout the league. But I am not convinced you can calculate your way to victory. I do believe there are intangibles that no stat sheet will show you. As far as D-League team is concerned, we're looking at 2016 to launch."
Prokhorov did skirt a question from John in Reno on what move he would like to undo, saying he was satisfied all the moves were "bold" and came from a "desire to win." After that, he says, "I let the chips fall where they may."
He addressed other issues as well including what the team needs to do to succeed this year and the possibility of international play between NBA teams and European clubs. But his final answer, to a question from Doug in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, about the "mascot void," may have been the most intriguing. And yes, we are going to force you to watch to find out his answer. It is distinctly Russian.
Special thanks to Ellen Pinchuk of Mikhailov and Partners, Prokhorov's spokesman, for facilitating this.
- Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov endorses GM Billy King's roster changes - Mike Mazzeo - ESPN New York