The NBA‘s annual media day was help this Tuesday, and Brooklyn was the place to be. The Brooklyn Nets had one of the best off-seasons to recent date, acquiring proven All-Stars and young players filled with potential. With all this excitement and a fresh new start to the Nets’ organization, media permeated throughout the area, interviewing players on their thoughts of the upcoming season.
NBA TV’s David Aldridge, who was at media day earlier this week, talked to most of the roster, but no players’ words were more interesting than Deron Williams‘. According to Williams, the 2012 Nets are very similar to the 2004 Detroit Pistons in the fact that both teams don’t rely on a single superstar, but rather, the performance of the team as a whole.
Williams went on to explain that the 2004 Pistons team didn’t have a particular star, but instead had a top-10 player at every position. To certain extent, the same is true for the Nets.
- According to ESPN, Deron Williams is the 10th best player in the entire league, let alone at the point guard spot. Two years ago, before Chris Paul blossomed into a superstar, Deron Williams was arguably the best point guard in the NBA.
- Joe Johnson, nicknamed “the silent assassin” doesn’t garner too much praise from fans around the league, but anyone would agree that JJ is a top-10 shooting guard- consistent averages of 20-5-5 show why.
- Gerald Wallace, a superb athlete and second to none at moving without the ball, is also a top-10 at his position. Not only is Wallace a scoring threat (15.2 PPG in 16 games with the Nets last year), but also a terrific rebounder. Just two seasons ago, Wallace was averaging 10.1 rebounds a game, with 32 double-doubles on the year.
- Because of his inability to rebound consistently, Brook Lopez draws a lot of skepticism, but his offensive game overrides it. According to Shaquille O’Neal, not only is Brook Lopez is better than Dwight Howard, but a top-2 center in the league next to Andrew Bynum. O’Neal calls Lopez ”one of the last true centers in the league”.
- The only question mark in the Nets starting lineup is at the power forward spot. Despite being a double-double machine and being good-looking enough to marry Kim Kardashian, Kris Humphries is not yet a top-10 power forward. However, Humphries has only been getting better each season, and I see no reason why he would start to regress now. Also, with many of the top power forwards getting older (Kevin Garnett, Zach Randolph, Dirk Nowitzki, etc.)), Humphries could fill in as the veterans fall out of the picture.
Besides Humphries, Deron Williams’ statement of the Nets having a top-10 at every position is accurate. Humphries, although not top-10, is definitely a top-15 power forward in the league.