With ten days remaining before the All-Star break, there are only a few NBA teams we should take seriously as title contenders.
The Brooklyn Nets aren’t among them.
This isn’t to say the team has been a disappointment. Few knew what to make of the new-look Nets entering the 2012-13 season. After a shaky 14-14 start, they’ve bounced back nicely, winning 15 of 21 games under interim coach P.J. Carlesimo.
They’re right where they should be, in the middle of the playoff pack.
The Nets roster lacks the superstar talent of the Knicks and Heat, and it doesn’t feature as many lock down defenders as the Bulls and Pacers. They don’t have a LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony to carry the load when the rest of the team is struggling, and they can’t always rely on their defense and rebounding to pull out close games.
This doesn’t mean the Nets are a bad team. They’re good, just not great. They’ve beaten most of the teams they should beat and have done a nice job protecting their home court. Barring a total collapse, they’ll be playing in the postseason and are definitely capable of winning a first-round series.
But we should temper our expectations.
Right now, Brooklyn is a playoff team, not a championship team.