Gerald Green Emerging as a Star Player with the New Jersey Nets

John NizinskiAnalyst IIIMarch 17, 2012

NEWARK, NJ - MARCH 07:  Gerald Green #14 of the New Jersey Nets looks on against the Los Angeles Clippers at Prudential Center on March 7, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Chris Chambers/Getty Images)
Chris Chambers/Getty Images

One of the biggest stories surrounding the New Jersey Nets is not about Dwight Howard or Deron Williams. It is about the emergence of Gerald Green.

Green signed his first 10-day contract with the Nets on Feb 27. Before signing with the Nets, Green was in the 2011 Slam Dunk Contest. He also was named MVP of the 2012 D-League All-Star Game.

He played decently in his first 10-day stint and displayed his high-flying ability and athleticism. In five games, Green averaged 18.6 minutes, 5.6 points and two rebounds per game. That was enough to earn him a second 10-day contract.

It has been in this 10-day contract that he has been making an impact. Green shook the entire NBA with one of the best dunks of the year against the Houston Rockets on Mar 10. He scored 26 points on 10-of-15 shooting from the field against the Rockets, which included that highlight reel dunk.

The following game against the Milwaukee Bucks, he scored 11 points and grabbed six rebounds. On Mar 14, Green again put up 26 points in the Nets win over the Toronto Raptors. He had a 69 percent field-goal percentage and hit seven of the nine free throws he attempted.

The only thing good to take away from the Nets lose to the Magic was Green's performance. He had 11 points in the first half and ended with 14 points and four rebounds. Green was 6-of-9 from the field.

He has started to put it all together and has proven to be more than just a high-flyer. Green has been successful using the fade-away jumper. Also, because he is a threat to both hit the long-range jump shot and drive, Green is able to keep defenders guessing. He has utilized the pump fake to get defenders in the air and get to the basket. His athleticism helps him defensively and with grabbing rebounds.

He has absolutely played well enough to receive a contract for the remainder of the season—and possibly beyond. Green could provide the Nets with high energy off the bench for a long time if he keeps up this level of play.