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Long Island Nets’ Drew Gordon wants back in NBA

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Twitter/Newsday

Drew Gordon had a taste of the NBA in Philly back in 2014-15, appearing in nine games with the Sam Hinkie 76ers. Aaron Gordon’s older brother has spent the last three years overseas in the French, Lithuanian and Russian clubs, most recently with Zenit St. Petersburg (with former Net Sergey Karasev.)

The Nets signed the 28-year-old power forward to a training camp contract then waived him and offered him a shot with the Long Island Nets. He’s happy to be here, as he told Owen O’Brien of Newsday.

“I’ve basically been living my life out of four suitcases for the last five, six years,” said Gordon at Long Island Nets media day. “It’s always interesting to immerse yourself into different cultures and having to live there for an extended period of time. You just have to learn to go with the flow with certain types of things and be able to adapt quickly and make changes with your game and everyday lifestyle.”

He played well with Zenit, averaging 12 points and seven rebounds, hitting 25 percent from three. He has one advantage. His coach, Will Weaver, was an assistant in Philadelphia when Gordon played both in summer league and regular season with the 76ers.

Weaver has familiarity with Gordon from their time together with the 76ers, and said the forward will not only help the Nets in games, but at practice.

“Dropping that type of legit big into this environment makes it real,” Weaver said. “You have a real screen, you have a real box out you have to make, that is a really valuable piece. Not only for what it does for opponents, but what it does for his teammates during practice.”

Weaver thinks Long Island will be able to win if they can get out and run, but worries a bit about how how they’ll do in half court. No word yet on whether either of the Nets draft picks, 6’9” guard Dzanan Musa or 6’10” forward Rodions Kurucs will get time in Uniondale, starting a week from Saturday when Long Island plays Westchester, the Knicks affiliate.

On Thursday, Long Island waived forward Xavier Ford and guards Nate Hickman and Jahvari Josiah, a Brooklyn native.

Still on the roster are three local products: returning player Kamari Murphy of Coney Island and rookies Durand Scott of the Bronx and Ish Sanogo of Newark and Seton Hall.