We're in the middle of the All-Star break and beyond that the Brooklyn Nets are getting ready to hit the road for what seems like forever. And while Mason Plumlee and Bojan Bogdanovic -- as well as the Barclays Center -- will do their best to represent the Brooklyn this weekend, it is nice to take a little break from the 2014-15 season, put the past behind and have a little fun, while looking further into the past. Nets fans have earned that right....right?
Over the the New York Post, Fred Kerber and company put together a list of who they believe the all-time greatest Nets. In this exercise, they included the ABA, so, naturally, Dr. J made the list. Zero Brooklyn Nets, however, made the list, which kind of makes sense. The franchise is not three years old and the current regime hasn't done much to climb to the ranks of the likes of Julius Erving and Jason Kidd.
The ABA types, including the good — make that great — Doctor, Hall of Famer Rick Barry, Paultz, Bill Melchionni and Super John Williamson dominated early Nets lore. In New Jersey, there were highs and lows with the likes of Buck Williams, Mike Gminski, Derrick Coleman and the late Drazen Petrovic, but usually, the Nets were the second-class act in the area.
"Jason changed the chemistry of our team and our whole culture. He was great from Day 1," said NBA president of basketball operations Rod Thorn who, as Nets GM/president, traded for Kidd. In one season, the Nets went from laughingstocks to NBA Finalists. With Kenyon Martin on the front line and Kidd in the backcourt, the Nets made two Finals runs. Kidd and a later acquisition, Vince Carter, helped keep the Nets competitive after Martin was dealt amid a disastrous series of cost-cutting moves. Now, Brooklyn.
Here, now, is their list of the all-time greatest Nets:
The starters are guards Kidd and Petrovic, forwards Erving and Williams with Coleman, a true power forward, as the center. The bench has Williamson, Barry, Carter, Paultz, Martin, Gminski and Melchionni. Loughery is the coach.
It's hard to argue with these, really. Again, no one in the current regime is quite there. You have to believe that if Brook Lopez plays out another contract with the Nets -- four to five years? -- and can stay healthy he'll work his way onto this list.
Other than that, it's either "too soon to tell" or too little, too late for a few of the other guys -- though, Joe Johnson deserves serious consideration, especially if he plays out his current contract in Brooklyn.
What do you think, Nets fans? Is there anyone you would add to this list?
- Dr. J, Jason Kidd and the all-time Nets team - Fred Kerber - NY Post