With trade rumors still swirling, the Nets took Cam Thomas, LSU’s shooting guard who averaged 23 points a game this season, at No. 27. Thomas, 19, is a 6’5” freshman. Then, Brooklyn turned around two picks later and took Day’Ron Sharpe, the 6’11” North Carolina freshman, with a pick acquired earlier in the night from Phoenix.
Here’s what ESPN’s Jonathan Givony wrote of Thomas in the last mock draft. Thomas had been projected as high as the late teens.
While only 19, Thomas has some of the best scoring instincts in the draft and will likely need little time to acclimate himself offensively thanks to the aggressiveness and skill he brings on that end of the floor.
Sam Vecenie of The Athletic was less enthusiastic (even though he had Thomas going to the Nets at #27.
Thomas will need to be so good at scoring that he overcomes his weaknesses. And here’s the thing: That threshold for scoring in the NBA is exceptionally high. Having said that, Thomas genuinely might meet it, given that he finished fourth in the country in scoring as a teenager and has all sorts of creativity as a scorer.
Here’s some highlights...
Here’s what ESPN wrote of Sharpe, who was close to a consensus pick for the Nets in mocks.
If they don’t move out, adding depth at center with a player they can develop into a meaningful contributor in the long haul may make some sense. Sharpe has helped himself in the pre-draft process, shedding weight, showcasing much better floor-spacing potential than previously advertised, and impressing in private interviews with his boisterous personality.
Vecenie wrote of Sharpe...
He’s one of those dudes who just seems to know what he’s doing out there at a high level. He makes really high-level reads and rotations. Some of the passes he makes for his size display a feel that isn’t normal for a big. He’s light on his feet and is the kind of athlete who tends to outperform the traditional valuations of explosive athleticism. But he’s pretty rough on defense right now.
While the picks have been officially recorded as the Nets’ selections, there were continuing rumors that the Nets were involved in trade talks. Adrian Wojnarowski seemed to be hinting at the possibility just before the Thomas pick.
Brooklyn is keeping its pick at No. 27 for now, because LSU's Cam Thomas is still on the board, source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 30, 2021
After the Draft, Sean Marks touched on the possibility of a Dinwiddie S&T, but played it coy.
“It’s difficult to discuss the hypotheticals. It sounds like you know more about the upcoming trades and so forth than I do,” Marks said jokingly when asked about rumors. “But we’ve been focused on the draft right now.
“Spencer obviously being a pending free agent, we’ll have to wait for the right time to talk to him and talk to his agents and his people, and we’ll figure out what’s best for both Spencer and the Nets. And if there’s something to be done where he’s returning, terrific. If there’s not and he’s moving on, look, we wish Spencer all the best. He’s been nothing but a pro his entire time here and to be quite frank, he deserves the right to be a free agent.”
The trade rumors didn’t bother Thomas. In his post-draft interview at Barclays Center, Thomas said he appreciated being drafted by a contender...
Cam Thomas (No. 27 pick): “I feel like the team I’m going to is a championship level team, going to be winning games and playing for something. I feel that’s going to help me out in my rookie year to just have all that experience.”— Chris Milholen (@CMilholenSB) July 30, 2021
According to reports the last few days, the Nets were engaged in talks to move off DeAndre Jordan’s contract which has two years and $19.7 million left. There were also suggestions that the Nets could ultimately become part of the Lakers-Wizards trade that sent Russell Westbrook to L.A. In one rumored scenario, the Wizards would send Kyle Kuzma to Brooklyn as part of a Spencer Dinwiddie sign-and-trade. Neither had materialized by the end of the Draft.
The first rounders are different in a number of ways. Thomas is more in-your-face while Sharpe is more low-key. As Mike Scotto tweeted, Thomas does not lack for confidence. He quoted from a podcast earlier this month...
Cam Thomas: “I compare myself to Devin Booker, Bradley Beal, and James Harden.“— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) July 30, 2021
The Brooklyn Nets landed arguably the top scorer in the NBA Draft at No. 27 overall. More from our conversation on @hoopshype. https://t.co/2WAb1jXxFH
In the second round, the Nets took Kessler Edwards, a 6’8” defensive-minded swingman out of Pepperdine at No. 44, and Marcus Zegarowski, a 6’2” shooting guard with range out of Creighton, at No. 49, and RaiQuan Gray, a 6’8”, 260-pound big man out of Florida State at No 59. Zegarowski is the younger brother of Michael Carter-Williams.
Of the three, Edwards appears to be the most NBA-ready, primarily because of his defense.
After the Draft, David Duke Jr., a 6’5” shooting guard out of Providence, said he’s been invited to Brooklyn’s training camp. Like Edwards, he has a reputation as a stopper.
Counting Jevon Carter, acquired in the Suns trade, the Nets wound up with seven new faces. Not all of them will make the Brooklyn roster, but with two-way contracts and direct signings to Long Island, there will be opportunities.
- Nets trade Landry Shamet to Suns for first-round NBA Draft pick, Jevon Carter - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- Russell Westbrook deal could lead Nets’ Spencer Dinwiddie to Wizards - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- Nets add scorer Cam Thomas with No. 27 pick at NBA Draft - Michael Blinn - New York Post
- Nets select Day’Ron Sharpe in NBA Draft - Justin Terranova - New York Post
- Nets draft LSU’s Cameron Thomas, North Carolina’s Day’Ron Sharpe after trading Landry Shamet to Suns - Greg Logan - Newsday
- Nets pick up LSU guard Cameron Thomas at No. 27 overall - Kristian Winfield - New York Daily News
- Nets kick off active offseason with Landry Shamet trade to Suns: source - Kristian Winfield - New York Daily News
- Cam Thomas scouting report: What to expect from the Nets’ selection at No. 27 in the 2021 NBA Draft - Alex Schiffer & Sam Vecenie - The Athletic NBA
- Day’Ron Sharpe scouting report: What to expect from the Nets’ selection at No. 29 in the 2021 NBA Draft - Alex Schiffer & Sam Vecenie - The Athletic NBA
- Scouting reports on Nets’ three second-round picks in the 2021 NBA Draft - Alex Schiffer & Sam Vecenie - The Athletic NBA
- BROOKLYN NETS SELECT FOUR PLAYERS IN 2021 NBA DRAFT, ACQUIRE DRAFT RIGHTS TO DAY’RON SHARPE - Brooklyn Nets
- CAMERON THOMAS LEADS BROOKLYN NETS 2021 NBA DRAFT CLASS - Tom Dowd - Brooklyn Nets
- SEAN MARKS: 2021 NBA DRAFT (Video) - Brooklyn Nets
- GALLERY: DRAFT NIGHT WITH CAMERON THOMAS - Brooklyn Nets