The Brooklyn Nets made two unsurprising moves before Thursday afternoon’s trade deadline, firmly joining the ‘selling’ camp for a third year in a row. With Royce O’Neale and Spencer Dinwiddie now out of town, and Dennis Schröder arriving in Brooklyn, Sean Marks took the time to speak with reporters during halftime of Thursday's contest against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Before Brooklyn endured a second-half bludgeoning from the Cavs, Marks talked about the team’s shifting timelines, pending impacts of their new editions, as well as their veteran departures.
“First and foremost, these days are never easy,” Marks started. “The trade deadline is one of those days, that it has an opportunity to acquire new players, to tweak the team a little bit and so forth. So I look forward to those opportunities but at the same time, it comes with people leaving your Nets family and that’s never the easy for anybody. I’ve been there myself through it, so I totally get it. So I’d like to thank those guys first and foremost, because their fingerprints are all over the Nets from the time that they’ve been here. From you everything you’ve done on the court, off the court, in the community, you name it.”
“It’s been really special to have Royce and Harry [Giles III] and Spencer here for the times they were here and now they’re fine, young gentleman,” Marks added. “We wish them nothing but the best.”
With formalities out of the way, Marks went on to describe what factored into Brooklyn’s moves today, touching on a balance between the team on the floor tonight and the ones the plan to field in the future.
“I think we go into these days always thinking about future flexibility, try to maintain some level of sustainability when we’re looking at how does the team look this year,” said Marks. “How’s it gonna look in six months time from now? How’s it gonna look in three, four years? We’re looking way down the road and at what’s fitting with our timetable, fitting with the group that we’re envisioning that we will come back with this next offseason, and we’ll bring back as Nets in a year or two from here. I think we feel pretty good about it by adding the players that we obviously added and bringing those guys in, but at the same time you’re keeping some those draft assets as well. And again, that future flexibility.”
Sean Marks on his trade deadline priorities:— Erik Slater (@erikslater_) February 9, 2024
"I think we go into these days always thinking about future flexibility... We feel pretty good about adding the players we did... But at the same time keeping some of those draft assets as well. And again, that future flexibility." pic.twitter.com/sDgMtySVEi
For any fanliving under a rock, Brooklyn sent Royce O’Neale to the Phoenix Suns for three second round picks, Keita Bates-Diop, Jordan Goodwin and even a stash, Vanja Marinkovic,, Serbian shooting guard . They waived Goodwin this evening, creating an open roster spot. They also shipped Spencer Dinwiddie out for Dennis Schröder and Thaddeus Young. They waived Young today as well.
When asked about whether or not Dinwiddie’s nonexistent contract extension played into the team trading him this year Marks declined to comment, citing it as something “behind the scenes and so forth.” He then moved to praise the incoming Schröder.
“The focus now is on Dennis, and he’s a player that we’ve focused on and followed for years now,” Marks said. “I was fortunate enough to be over and watch FIBA this offseason and saw him there as well. It’s great to see how he led Germany and what he did for that team. He brings a level of toughness, a compete, a grit, the things that we’re looking for. It’s gonna be fun to get him amongst this locker room and have these guys compete and get out there.”
Marks also expressed excitement regarding Bates-Diop, nothing that they’ve been following him since his days as a Buckeye. He was also about Brooklyn’s overall timeline, noting how quickly it’s shifted given all the team’s additions and subtractions prior to today.
“When we first came in here — I think it was almost eight years ago — we had one idea of what our timetable would look like, right? All of a sudden, that gets sped up when you have — credit to our coaches,” Marks said. “They developed guys; obviously we’re playing against a couple of those guys tonight. They develop, they speed up your timetable a little bit.”
“That doesn’t mean you have to go all-in when you go all-in, but at the same time, we had the opportunity to acquire players of Kevin and Kai and James’ stature. You know, we’re going to want to do that, and I would do it all over again,” Marks recalled. “But at the same time, this time, it’s how we’re developing these young guys. And who fits our timetable? You look at the age-group of the guys that we have here, in that 22-to-25-to-27-year-old, you know you’ve got three or four years. It’s going to be fun to see what Mikal looks like when he’s in his prime, fun to see what Cam looks like when he’s in his prime, Nic Claxton, the list sort of goes on there.
“So I don’t want to say we’re on a three, four-year timetable. It could be faster than that; we’ve seen it move quicker than that in the past.”
“I would do it all over again,” says Sean Marks on the Nets Big 3 when asked about Brooklyn’s shifting timelines.— Collin Helwig (@collinhelwig) February 9, 2024
Also spoke on the Nets seeing primes of Bridges and Cam Johnson. pic.twitter.com/C7IycFD4z2
With Thaddeus Young and Jordan Goodwin being waived shortly after they were acquired, the Nets have an open roster spot. Marks didn’t seem pressed to fill it. He was asked if Jalen Wilson could fill the spot. Wilson is currently on a two-way.
“We’ll see how these guys come in over the next couple of weeks, couple of months and how they compete for these spots,” said Marks. “And like normal, we’ll canvass the league and see who else is out there. But you know, we’re going to keep our options open for now for sure.”
As for the rest of this season and Brooklyn’s goals, Marks had the following to say:
“I think it’s really important that we go out there and compete. I mean, that’s the number one thing. Our goal here is to play in the post season. That’s for sure. I’m not gonna walk in that locker room and tell that group anything different. I think they’re a competitive young group and they wanna prove to people they can do it. So hopefully there’s continuity within the roster and health is a number one priority I think for every team, but I think over the next 32 games, that’s what would we’d love to see is competing at a high level night in and night out and seeing who rises to the occasion.”
- Nets’ timetable for success hazy after moves at trade deadline ($) - Evan Barnes - Newsday
- Nets GM Sean Marks cites ‘future flexibility’ as rationale behind Thursday’s trade ($) - C.J. Holmes - New York Daily News