Zach Lowe reports that the Brooklyn Nets have indeed given Markel Brown a qualifying offer, meaning he'll become a restricted free agent with the Nets able to match whatever any other team decides to offer him. The Nets had until June 30 to make the offer.
Nets will tender Markel Brown a qualifying offer, making him restricted free agent, sources say.— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) June 29, 2016
On Tuesday, Brown's camp wasn't very optimistic the Nets would keep him, telling NetsDaily that his minutes would be scarce with the acquisition of two combo guards acquired at the draft.
As June 30 deadline approaches, growing belief #Nets will not retain Markel Brown. Hard to see him getting time w/ position nearly filled.— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) June 29, 2016
As one League source put it, "a qualifying just means he's now restricted. They could still decide not to match an offer on him we'll see."
Between the Nets' two draft picks -- Caris LeVert and Isaiah Whitehead -- and players locked in already such as Bojan Bogdanovic and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, it wasn't hard to see why this was an unlikely option. But things change.
Brown was taken with the 44th overall pick by the Nets in 2014, and has averaged 5.3 points in 16.2 minutes per game. He's shown his capabilities of being a role player in the league, but thus far, nothing more.
Still, Zach Lowe lists Brown among his bargain free agents...
Markel Brown: Now it’s getting a little depressing. Signing Brown would be a long-shot, low-cost bet on two things: his 44 percent mark on corner 3s last season and a rangy, almost 6-foot-9 wingspan that could help Brown defend above his listed 6-3 height. Those corner 3s were wide open because defenses have correctly concluded Brown’s jumper is busted. They ignored him to muck up Brooklyn’s spacing, and it’s unclear if Brown’s newfound accuracy from the corners would sustain if defenders slid even one half-step closer to him.
To earn a rotation spot, Brown will have to do something off the dribble when a teammate swings him the ball and defenders close out at him. That bricky jumper makes the job harder. Defenders won’t sprint at him in a panic and should be able to hold their balance when Brown tries to drive by them. The Nets tried Brown a bunch in the pick-and-roll, but defenders moonwalked under picks, inviting him to belch midrange jumpers. But when he found a driving lane, Brown showed unexpectedly good vision. He dished 3.3 dimes per 36 minutes last year, double his average from 2014-15, and he can make every basic read out of the pick-and-roll — plus some advanced looks.
No word yet on the status of Wayne Ellington's player option or the Nets desire to trade Jarrett Jack before having to release him Thursday night.