Dzanan Musa won’t participate in All-Star Weekend. He wasn’t named to the G League All-Stars either, but both the Nets and his agent, Miško Raznatović, believe that it’s more about his youth (at 19, he’s 13 months younger than his next youngest teammate, Jarrett Allen) and his injuries (ankle preseason, shoulder mid) than it is his skills or work ethic.
Raznatovic spoke with Bosnia’s big sports site, SportSport Bosnia, this week about his client and how the Nets see him. Musa, he said, had a good summer then was injured when he returned to Sarajevo in September to play for the Bosnian national team in the FIBA World Cup qualifiers.
Then, as he was hitting his stride with the Long Island Nets in mid-December, he partially separated his shoulder. The Nets first round pick was out for almost a month and a half, returning the first week in February.
”He is a great fighter, failure is not an option for him,” Raznatovic told SportSport. “He has been brilliant in the G-League. The people in Brooklyn are very pleased. That is, first-hand information, because I am in good relations with them, satisfied with his understanding of everything. There’s a lot of time and I’m sticking with my claim that he will be one of the players from this area who will mark the NBA.”
Indeed, Musa, who’s the seventh youngest player in the NBA and third youngest in the G League, has played in 22 games for the Long Island Nets this season. He’s played an average of 31 minutes and has averaged 19.6 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
Will Weaver, the Long Island coach, spoke glowingly about Musa’s game after he scored 26 points, grabbed six rebounds and handed out six assists, some of them on nifty, NBA-ready passes, last week.
“You’d expect a 19-year-old to have a big, fast curve ... and he has,” Weaver said, smiling. “I think the hardest thing for any young person —and we had this conversation openly a few days ago— is that there’s no home run. There’s just nothing out there to swing for the fences on. It’s just single, single, single, single and it just adds up.”
And so, he told Musa, focus on those incremental moves.
Whether he will see minutes for Brooklyn during a playoff push is uncertain. He’s a wing with point guard skills on a team filled, when healthy, with wings with point guard skills. But he won’t turn 20 until May 8. There’s plenty of time.