Joe Harris on NBA Team Planes, Best Shooters, Top Quotes of B/R AMA

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistOctober 15, 2019

Brooklyn Nets forward Joe Harris (12) in the first half during an NBA basketball game against the Phoenix Suns, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

Joe Harris has carved out a niche as one of the best role players in the NBA, but the Brooklyn Nets star took the spotlight Tuesday as part of Tuesday's AMA session with Bleacher Report.

Harris began his career with the Cleveland Cavaliers when he was a second-round draft pick in 2014. LeBron James' return to the organization changed their plans, which also limited Harris' time on the court as a rookie. 

During his second season, the Cavs dealt Harris to the Orlando Magic in January 2016, and he was immediately waived. It wasn't until the Nets signed him that summer when he found a home in the NBA. 

Given his early travels around the NBA, Harris is uniquely equipped to describe what happens on various team planes while journeying from city to city for games. 

"Honestly, the team plane you are either 1) watching a tv show or movie, 2) sleeping or 3) gambling," he said. "My rookie year, I actually did none of those. I counted Kendrick Perkins' winnings for him. They used to call me 'The Accountant.'"

Harris has previously detailed the "duffel bag" of cash Perkins would win on team flights, and the longtime NBA center routinely cut in his accountant on those winnings. 

Another money-related topic that was brought up involved paying college athletes. 

Harris thinks the NCAA could also do more to compensate college students: "I think that a lot of times, even at UVA, some really good Football, Soccer, Basketball players that didn’t make it pro could have benefitted off their likeness. You get a lot of accommodations for being on scholarship, but there is too much money floating around in the NCAA to not be giving it to the people earning it."

California's Fair Pay to Play Act, which was signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom last month and will go into effect in January 2023, will allow student-athletes to earn money off their likeness. 

After leading the NBA in three-point percentage last season (47.4), Harris knows better than most what it takes to be an elite shooter and shared his top three shooters in NBA history. 

"Steph, Klay for sure and then Ray Allen," Harris said. He also politely shied away from lumping himself in with other top shooters currently in the NBA, simply noting there are "so many" good ones right now. 

Curry (43.6) and Thompson (41.9) rank among the top 13 shooters in NBA history by three-point percentage; Allen currently holds the NBA record for three-pointers made (2,973) and attempted (7.429). It's hard to pick a better trio than them if you need win a shooting contest. 

Looking at the 2019-20 season, the Nets have a brand-new look with the additions of Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. Durant's presence won't be felt until next season while he recovers from his Achilles injury suffered in Game 5 of the NBA Finals. 

That leaves Irving, who is coming off a tumultuous year with the Boston Celtics, as the centerpiece of Brooklyn's roster. Harris has previous experience playing with the six-time All-Star in Cleveland and had good things to say about the controversial star. 

"Kyrie is a good guy," Harris said. "Spent a lot of time with him over the years because we were the same class in high school and ACC when he was at Duke. Then I was with him my rookie year in Cleveland."

Harris said being able to make the playoffs last season has been his best moment with the Nets, but expectations will continue to go up for the franchise in 2019-20 and beyond if Durant returns at the level he was before the injury.  

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