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Brooklyn Nets vets praise injured rookies

Brooklyn Nets

Chris McCullough should be on the court Monday vs. Denver, his first game as a pro and his first game of any kind in more than a year, since blowing out his knee at Syracuse.  Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is "probably a little ways away," says Coach Tony Brown.

Their returns are not just awaited by fans, but also by their teammates who see a strong work ethic already from the two, as Fred Kerber reports Wednesday.

"Those two guys have been working extremely hard, just trying to get healthy and get out here on the court. They’re both freakish athletic," Joe Johnson said. "Chris is more of a tweener. … With the way the league is going, it’s going to benefit him. He can shoot and he’s obviously athletic. … Rondae, same for him. Very athletic, defensive-minded guy, all-out hustle. The sky’s the limit for those guys."

"Rondae does it all. He gets deflections, steals, blocks shots, shares the ball — he just has such a great motor out there. Chris is just such a quick learner. … He’s been taking great strides, he’s been confident out there," said Brook Lopez.

Lopez also revealed that his admiration for the two goes deep.

"They make me get popcorn for them before the games," Lopez said. "I don’t know how that worked out. It’s all just mixed up here."

The two rookies, part of everyone's core for the Nets, should be on court together shortly after the All-Star Break.