Quantcast

Avery Johnson is sick of Kevin Garnett knowing all the Nets’ plays

Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett has seen it all. After 17 seasons and counting in the NBA, there’s very little you can throw at the future Hall-of-Famer on the court that would catch him off guard. His attention to detail has made him one of the best defensive players in the league for years and has frustrated people like Brooklyn Nets coach Avery Johnson along the way.

“The funny thing is, I wish he would be quiet on the floor and not call out your plays,” Johnson said Thursday before his team hosted the Celtics, via ESPNNewYork.com. “He’s seen so much. We’ll call a play and he’ll say, ‘Joe (Johnson) is going over here and Deron (Williams) is going here.’ It’s not funny anymore, OK?

“As much as (Rajon) Rondo quarterbacks their offense, (Garnett) quarterbacks their defense. … I like every now and then when we’ll surprise him with something, and then maybe he’ll look at the bench and curse the other coaches out, not me.”

Of course, Johnson is giving Garnett the highest form of compliment by basically admitting that he gets in his head during games. Nets center Brook Lopez echoed Johnson’s kind words, calling K.G. “one of the best players of all time” and admitting that he tries to emulate a lot of what The Big Ticket does.

Garnett may be 36 and past his prime, but there’s a reason Rajon Rondo made these comments about him just a few days ago. The body always starts to go, but that doesn’t stop the mind from staying sharp.

Marcus Camby takes a shot at Nets fans

It has been a full decade since Marcus Camby took the court for a regular season game in a New York Knicks uniform, but the veteran center has already begun stirring the pot with the Knicks’ cross-state rivals. The Knicks have always been called New York’s team when it comes to basketball, but the Nets have always been based in New Jersey. Now that they have moved their franchise to Brooklyn, will things change?

Camby doesn’t expect them to, as was evident when he was asked about Hurricane Sandy resulting in the postponing of the Nets-Knicks opener and the unveiling of Brooklyn’s new $1 billion arena.

“Well, it was going to be a home game for us tonight too,” Camby said according to ESPNNewYork.com.

And so it begins — or should I say continues. Whether or not the Nets move to Brooklyn results in a more loyal fan base remains to be seen, but it will take a lot for them to match the Knicks in terms of a following. When Dwight Howard supposedly wanted to be traded to the Nets, Patrick Ewing warned him that Nets fans are typically Knicks fans first. Camby seems to agree with that. We’ll see if the move to Brooklyn changes things at all.

Mikhail Prokhorov: If the Nets don’t win a title I’ll punish myself by getting married

Brooklyn Nets fans who are expecting big things from their team in the post-New Jersey era can rest assured knowing that the team’s owner feels the same. Mikhail Prokhorov expects the Nets to win a championship in the very near future. The Nets owner has vowed to deliver for the fans since he took over more than two years ago, and he took it a step further during a recent interview with Steve Serby of the NY Post.

“I have said that if the Nets don’t win the NBA championship within five years, I will punish myself by getting married,” Prokhorov said when asked if marriage is something he would consider one day. “We are in year three. So no one is more interested in winning a championship than yours truly.”

As for what he would be looking for in a woman if he were to be so unlucky, Prokhorov said the following.

“Beautiful, smart, sexy and makes a mean bowl of borscht.”

Although he clearly does not want to get married, it sounds like the Nets owner has very specific standards for what he is looking for in a wife. Prokhorov also confirmed that he will not be fulfilling this promise during the same interview, so who knows if he will really take the plunge should the Nets not win a title within the next few seasons.

When asked how soon he expects the Nets to win a championship, Prokhorov said “June.” Retaining Deron Williams and adding Joe Johnson should help, but I don’t think it makes the Nets better than the Heat or Celtics at the moment. Unless Brooklyn can prove it is better than those teams and others before the end of the 2014-2015 season, some lucky lady could be marrying into a boatload of money.

H/T SbB Live

Deron Williams didn’t like teammates laughing after losses last season

The Nets experienced a major turnaround over the offseason. Not only did they change locations, jerseys, and color schemes, but they also overhauled their roster and appear ready to compete for a top playoff spot. All the changes are a relief for All-Star point guard Deron Williams, who was so frustrated with the team’s struggles last season he had to be called out by coach Avery Johnson for his behavior.

Johnson didn’t like the negative body language Williams displayed on the court during the Nets’ 22-44 showing last season which tied them for the fifth-worst record in the league. Williams believes he had good reason for acting the way he did.

“It was hard. I’ve never been in that position before,” Williams told reporters Tuesday, according to ESPN New York. “So at times, I’ve showed frustration, but I think anybody would have. I think no matter who it is, if you were there every day and you saw what was going on in the locker room you’d be pissed off too sometimes. You’re getting your asses kicked and then you’re in the locker room laughing about the game afterwards.

“I don’t think that stuff is funny. That’s what we had to deal with last year. But I don’t think we’re going to deal with it this year, because just talking to the guys, that’s not what we’re about. We’re talking about not losing two games in a row. We were just trying to fight to win two games in a row last year.”

Williams’ frustration with the team last year was evident as early as last December when he said the Nets didn’t have many starters on their team.

While Williams’ behavior was not advisable, it certainly was understandable. And the good news for everyone associated with the franchise is that Williams stuck with the team despite being a free agent. His loyalty to the Nets, if you want to call it that, should pay off this season. The Nets will likely be a top-four seed in the Eastern Conference.

Photo credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Nets.com website is taunting the Brooklyn Nets, Mikhail Prokhorov (Picture)

If you happened to type in “Nets.com” into your address bar and expected to be taken to the website for the Brooklyn Nets basketball team, you’d be disappointed with your results.

The landing page for Nets.com seems to be boasting that they own the site rather than the NBA team or league (most team nicknames such as “Lakers.com” forwards to the team’s page on NBA.com). Visitors are greeted with the following message:

Looking for the New Jersey Nets?

Looking for the Brooklyn Nets?

They’re not here…but they SHOULD be!

After all, there’s just one team:

The Nets!

On the bottom left of the page, there is an image of Mark Cuban sticking out his tongue. There is a Russian message to the right of the picture which (according to Google Translate) says, “Michael, have you noticed? Vilena wondered…”

Jose Martinez at Complex Sports says Vilena is the name of a prostitute who was part of the scandal involving Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov, which was eventually dropped. Martinez believes Cuban, who has a longstanding feud with Prokhorov, is involved with the website.

We did a search and discovered that Cyber Mesa Computer Systems has owned the site since 1994 and owns it through 2014. Unless Cuban got to them and asked them to put up those messages, this taunting was done independent of him.

I have to say, this was a pretty pathetic taunt job. The site is pretty crude looking. Overall, it has nothing on one of the best cyber tricks we wrote about this year.

H/T Jocks and Stiletto Jill

Avery Johnson on Nets: ‘We’re not a championship team’

It has been five years since the Nets made the playoffs, but they are in a position to vastly improve heading into the 2012-2013 season. In addition to playing in an exciting new environment in Brooklyn, the Nets managed to bring back their important pieces from last year in Deron Williams, Brook Lopez, Gerald Wallace and Kris Humphries. They also acquired Joe Johnson in a blockbuster deal with the Hawks.

While almost everyone would be shocked if the Nets can’t improve upon their .333 winning percentage from last season, head coach Avery Johnson did his best to curb expectations earlier this week.

“Deron was a big key to the whole puzzle,” Johnson said according to the Dallas Morning News. “To be able to acquire some other talent through free agency or trades or re-signing some of our own guys, it’s pretty exciting for us. We’re not there yet. We’re not a championship team. We got a lot of work to do. But at the same time, we have a much better talent pool than we’ve had the last two years.

“We’re much more versatile than we’ve ever been. Right now, we look good on paper. Now we got to take it from looking good on paper and apply the work to go (forward).”

Joe Johnson doesn’t instantly take you from bottom-dweller to championship contender. Adding Dwight Howard in addition to the former Hawks star would have helped, but the Nets were unable to pull that off. Personally, I like what Avery’s doing here. We blast coaches for setting expectations too high and calling their teams championship ready, so we can’t fault him for this. Between a new city and a new venue that Mikhail Prokhorov says he will make a surprise appearance at, the Nets don’t need their head coach building any additional anticipation for the upcoming season.

Chest bump to Ball Don’t Lie

NBA reportedly didn’t like Nets’ black jerseys because African-Americans don’t look good on TV in black

The New York Times has a feature on Jay-Z’s involvement as a minority owner of the Brooklyn Nets, but there’s one particular nugget from the story that is more noteworthy than the others.

While depicting some areas where the rapper/businessman has impacted the franchise, reporter David M. Halbfinger slips in this controversial detail:

[Jay-Z] helped design the team logos and choose the team’s stark black-and-white color scheme, and personally appealed to National Basketball Association officials to drop their objections to it (the N.B.A., according to a person with knowledge of the discussion, thought that African-American athletes did not look good on TV in black, an assertion that a league spokesman adamantly denied).

It’s no wonder why the NBA would deny such a charge. I also don’t think a reputable publication like the New York Times would allow such a controversial anecdote to be printed unless it were well sourced.

The NBA is extraordinarily business-conscious, so they obviously care about how their product looks on TV. I wouldn’t ever expect them to confirm the story, but it’s interesting that it’s out there.

I actually think the Nets’ new logos and color scheme look excellent and am glad it was approved.

H/T I am a GM