There have been a lot of off-season and free agency grades. David Aldridge thinks the Nets had the worst off-season and most of those who ranked the Nets noted two things: they missed on Tyler Johnson and Allen Crabbe, but didn't make any dumb moves and could have as much as $50 million in cap space come July.
Now comes Sports Illustrated with an in-depth look at the Atlantic Division, from the 76ers and Celtics' A's to the Knicks D. The Nets didn't do well either, with a C- and a prediction of "a new flavor of awful" that could be worse than the 21-win season completed four long months ago.
And it's not just SI. Real GM gave the Nets a higher long-term grade than the Knicks.
The assessment is lengthy, but again, the bottom line is that Sean Marks didn't make any big mistakes unlike his predecessor and there are some possible gems, starting with Caris LeVert.
The Nets' biggest textbook rebuilding move—cashing in Thaddeus Young for a first-round pick they used to draft Caris LeVert—was perhaps Marks’s best play of the summer. At his age, Young was better suited to a team with playoff aspirations, while LeVert, 21, has the potential to be a rare beacon of hope in the Barclays Center wasteland if he can move past a leg injury that brought his senior year at Michigan to an early end.
One writer also suggests that Jeremy Lin, while a "fan favorite" is not the "savior." And again, that bottom line looks real bad...
After so many years of risky and/or expensive moves, Brooklyn’s boring summer practically feels like a relief. At the same time, this is still an organization that could very well take a step back after a 21-win season despite the presence of numerous vets in its rotation. In other words, this is a new flavor of awful, but it’s still awful.
But the S.I. writers tear into the crosstown rivals, giving Phil Jackson a D. It's harsh...
The only things standing between the Knicks and an "A" for their off-season grade is a time machine and an invincibility cloak. Unfortunately, Phil Jackson’s major additions are living in 2016, rather than 2011, and they are burdened by years of accumulated health concerns.
They also suggest that the four-year, $72 million deal the Knicks gave Joakim Noah, the Knicks big money deal this summer, could become a singular disaster.
Signing Noah, 31, to a four-year deal worth $72 million following the worst season of his career is simply inexplicable. The former All-Star and Defensive Player of the Year has been hit hard by injuries over the last two seasons, and his lacking offensive game has been increasingly difficult to work around. New York is left praying that Noah will somehow be able to reclaim and sustain his peak mobility and motor on defense. Otherwise, his signing could look like one of the summer’s worst by the time the trade deadline rolls around.
There's a lot more about both teams as well as Boston, Philadelphia and Toronto, but if you're a New York basketball fan, you might to look at what Seton Hall and St. John's have to offer.