Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Huge day for Brooklyn Nets: Williams re-signed after trade for Johnson; Howard remains a possibility; season ticket sales jump

Yesterday was a very big day for the Brooklyn Nets, as they re-signed star guard Deron Williams, a free agent, who would have had to sign for less money with the Dallas Mavericks, but was also inspired to stay by the Nets' bold trade for (overpaid) Atlanta shooting guard Joe Johnson and the re-signing of (overpaid) forward Gerald Wallace, as well as moves for some role players.

Tweeted John Brennan of the Bergen Record:
as only scribe on ‪#BKNNets‬ saga all 9 yrs, can't overstate how big stakes were today. disaster averted & should be far more
Wrote Howard Beck of the New York Times:
The decision ends months of suspense and vindicates General Manager Billy King’s bold decision to acquire Williams in a blockbuster trade in February 2011. At the time, the deal was considered a huge risk because Williams had only 17 months left on his contract, and mostly because the Nets were awful. 
Prokhorov's pockets

There was praise for big-spending team majority owner Mikhail Prokhorov and, not surprising, no mention of that little Barclays problem.

Wrote ESPN's Ian O'Connor:
So maybe the best trade the Nets ever made, or the best since [GM] Rod Thorn sent Stephon Marbury to Phoenix for Jason Kidd, is the trade of lightweight Bruce Ratner for the heavy-hitting Prokhorov, who dismisses the luxury tax as a lunchtime tip.

Whatever. [Current GM Billy] King knew he couldn't go marching into Brooklyn with Johnson as his biggest star. He knew he had to bring back Williams, and that Prokhorov would've made a move for his job -- sooner rather than later -- if he didn't.
Howard still a possibility

And the Nets are still in the running for disgruntled Orlando superstar Dwight Howard, though it wouldn't be simple to assemble the pieces, and they'd have to hope that rival teams with more to offer aren't deterred by Howard's statement that he prefers the Nets and wouldn't re-sign after a year.

Daily News columnist Mitch Lawrence wrote:
One way they could take the town from the Knicks, while putting a hole in the Garden’s marquee, is by importing Dwight Howard from Orlando. Howard is half nuts, but for all his turnovers and misadventures at the foul line, he’s still the top big man in the game. He makes waves, on and off the court. He says a lot of dumb stuff. But he fills seats.

Season ticket boost

The Daily News reported:
Barclays Center sold roughly 500 new season tickets on Tuesday, turning in a one-day, seven-figure haul, according to Brett Yormark, the CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment.

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