The Brooklyn Nets are legitimate title contenders with superstars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving leading the offense. The team has good depth at each position, too, which is why many around the NBA believe general manager Sean Marks doesn’t need to trade for Houston Rockets star James Harden.
However, the Nets’ third-best player was lost for the season recently, casting some doubt in Brooklyn as to whether the club can win the 2021 championship now. Guard Spencer Dinwiddie suffered a partially torn ACL and will undergo season-ending surgery.
While NBA pundits think the Nets need to make a trade to make up for the loss of Dinwiddie, it appears Brooklyn may turn to an old friend who is currently on the free-agent market.
Spencer Dinwiddie was projected to be the Nets’ third-leading scorer
Spencer Dinwiddie is a gifted offensive player who can score 20 points in his sleep. The former Colorado guard averaged 20.6 points per game for the Nets last season. Kevin Durant didn’t play in 2019-20 and Kyrie Irving only appeared in 20 games, so Dinwiddie’s usage rate was high.
With Dinwiddie out for the 2020-21 season, small forward Caris LeVert will be asked to be the third option on offense for the Nets. The talented youngster put up 18.7 points in 2019-20, so he’s capable of being a dependable scorer for Brooklyn.
However, the Nets need another guy who can create his own shot off the dribble in the half-court setting and space the floor with his shooting now that Dinwiddie is out for the season. Instead of giving up assets and trading for someone, Sean Marks may sign an old veteran in free agency who was briefly on the team last season.
The Nets are talking to Jamal Crawford
According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the Nets have been in contact with Jamal Crawford, who is currently an unrestricted free agent. The three-time Sixth Man of the Year played in one game for Brooklyn last season during the seeding games at Walt Disney World. Crawford suffered an injury just six minutes into his first game with the team and was done for the rest of the bubble games.
“But a guy who was supposed to be on this roster, and that’s Jamal Crawford. Jamal had– what, he had some– he had a hamstring injury during the bubble,” Haynes said on his podcast. “And that kind of hampered what he was able to do in the offseason. But he’s somebody that they’re still talking to, having conversations.”
Crawford has career averages of 14.6 points per game. He’s one of the best bench scorers in NBA history and could be a microwave scoring option for the Nets off their bench. Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are close with Crawford, as is DeAndre Jordan, who played with the Seattle native on the LA Clippers.
Jamal Crawford can stop begging for a job if Brooklyn signs him
The Nets should sign Jamal Crawford so that we don’t have to see him beg for a job on Twitter anymore. There are many below-average players in the NBA right now, so Crawford should certainly have a spot on a club since he’s one of the best bench weapons in league history.
Neither Kevin Durant nor Kyrie Irving got to play with Crawford last season since both guys were hurt by the time the Nets added the ageless wonder. It would be fun to watch Irving and Crawford play together since both players have elite ball-handling skills.
It’s going to be fascinating to see what the Nets do after losing Spencer Dinwiddie for the season. Adding Crawford makes all the sense in the world, but Sean Marks may have something else up his sleeve.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference.