In Kanye West’s “So Appalled," former Nets owner and rap superstar Jay Z asks an important question: Would you rather be underpaid or overrated?
Johnson doesn’t have to worry about being either of those things.
Iso Joe is exactly the opposite—while he’s grossly overpaid, Johnson has quietly become one of the NBA’s most underrated players.
The 14-year veteran was, without any shadow of a doubt, Brooklyn’s brightest star last season. And after averaging a team-high 15.8 points per game a year ago, he will again be the top dog in 2014-15.
But this time around, he’ll be playing shooting guard.
Hollins is known for being a traditional, old school kind of coach. In today’s NBA, which is often void of set positions, his brand of basketball is a dying breed. Sometimes, weird lineups work—the frontcourt of Johnson, Paul Pierce and Mason Plumlee proved to be pretty productive last season, for example.
Just because inserting Livingston into the starting lineup and playing small-ball worked for Kidd, don’t expect Hollins to automatically throw Jack into the first five.
While that’s certainly a possibility, the Nets are better off with Jack in the second unit and Johnson at the 2, where it will be easier for the team to run its offense through No. 7.
Livingston’s game includes a little bit of everything—scoring (despite his poor long-range jumper), playmaking, rebounding and defending. Jack, however, is a shoot-first guard who is most effective in transition.
Brooklyn’s optimal rotation should include Jack backing up Williams, and Johnson in his natural shooting guard slot.