The Brooklyn Nets fear losing Shaun Livingston this summer to free agency. Although Livingston has said he’d love to stay in Brooklyn, the Nets are limited in the amount of money they are allowed to offer him. They are only allowed to pay him the tax payer’s mid-level exception which is a three-year, $10 million deal.
The Nets are exploring all options to get a backup point guard in case Livingston does leave. One option they’ve looked at is a trade centered on Marcus Thornton in order to acquire PG Jarrett Jack of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
It would be a bad idea for the Nets to go after Jack because of what Thornton brings to the table. Thornton is known as the “Bayou Bomber” because he likes to take a lot of shots and tends to go on hot streaks.
At times last season after he was traded to the Nets he scored 20+ multiple times and carried the Nets to victory. He is a dynamo who can go off at any time and can shoot very well from deep. The Nets have him in the perfect role as lightning off the bench.
He struggled some in the playoffs last season but that was his first action in the playoffs of his career. He has always been stuck in situations where the teams he was on simply weren’t competitive enough.
Playing on a team full of veterans is perfect for him. They can keep him in check and make sure he doesn’t get out of hand with his chucker mentality.
With Jack, sure he brings stability off the bench, and is arguably the best backup point guard in the league, but he doesn’t have the microwave factor that Thornton brings. Jack does have a tendency to come up big during the biggest moments of the game, but not as well as Thornton.
Also the contract situation. The Nets are looking to be players in the 2016 free agency market, Jack will eat into that cap space the Nets will have, whereas Thornton comes off the books at the end of next season.
Keeping Thornton would be best for the Nets. The way he can score the ball, especially off the bench against other team’s second units, he’d be a candidate for the sixth man of the year award. Thornton is a must-keep if you’re the Nets.