The New Jersey Nets are currently a team on the brink of becoming a above average NBA team despite trading away a star player this offseason. They are coming into this season much younger and tougher on defense after the additions of Rafer Alston and Courtney Lee, along with returning stars Devin Harris and Brook Lopez.
In the aftermath of trading away long-time star Richard Jefferson in exchange for Yi Jilian, a power forward who has not lived up to expectations, the Nets were still weak in the Power Forward position. Yi averaged 8.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. Not giving the Nets the production they expected.
Former New York Knick power forward David Lee seems like he may be a perfect fit into the Nets lineup. Lee is currently a restricted free agent this NBA offseason. A restricted free agent can sign with any NBA team, but their original team can match the offer within 14 days and match the player.
David Lee would be an improvement over Yi if the Nets were to sign him. This season Lee averaged a double double per game with 16 points and almost 12 rebounds per game. He also had a much higher field goal percentage than Yi at .549 compared to Yi’s .382.
David Lee fits into the Nets play scheme well also. The pick and roll would work even better if both Lee and Lopez were running it to free up Harris and Lee. Lee finishes much better than Yi and also would be another improvement on defense.
One downside to signing Lee is the salary cap space for the Nets over the next couple of years. The Nets are planning to make a run at Lebron James and or Dwayne Wade as well as others next offseason. Signing Lee may put the Nets out of contention for some of these stars available in free agency after this season.
If the Nets were to sign Lee they would still be thinking about the future. Their team would have one of the youngest staring lineups in the NBA with an average age of 23.6. If they sign Lee they would be a top five NBA team within the next five seasons.
It depends on if the Nets want to throw away this season or not, but the Nets are close to being a playoff team next season. If the Nets were to add David Lee to their arsenal they would be a playoff team. Although they more than likely won’t win the championship within the next couple of seasons they will be one of the best teams in the NBA.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!