Stefan Bondy writes Monday about how after five years of short-term --and short-sighted-- moves aimed at instant gratification, the Nets and their ownership are now facing their day of reckoning. And it's likely to be ugly.
This is what happens when a franchise plays loose with its draft picks, when the future is ignored and invested in players who dwell in their middle 30s by the time their enormous contracts expire. It happens when a five-year plan, established by an impatient owner, goes up in flames. GM Billy King was hired by Mikhail Prokhorov in 2010 with a directive to make moves, and what followed is a series of shortsighted trades and eight-figure salaries.
Bondy was the first beat writer to point out, back in 2013, that the Nets wouldn't control their first round pick for another six years with trades and swaps. Now, as Draft Night approaches, he sees that future as one likely to disappoint both the organization and its fans.
Quoting Stan Van Gundy ("the worst situation of any NBA team") and Gerald Wallace ("they tookd a gamble. it backfired"), Bondy notes the Draft situation remains the biggest issue, handicapping the team.
[T]he Nets have traded or conceded swap rights to 13 first- and second-round picks during the five-year King/Prokhorov era, producing just two players (Johnson and Williams) who remain on the roster (and who are both on the trading block).
He also offers little hope that the Nets can move up ==and they will need to if they want to secure their top priority, a point guard, someone to ultimately replace Deron Williams, who remains a diminished figure. Billy King meets the media at 11 a.m. Monday, when he will no doubt discuss the draft ... and free agency.