After it looked like their team was about to dissolve earlier this summer, the Brooklyn Nets are about to enter training camp with championship aspirations once again.
But there is more good news, as Joe Harris, one of their key role players, is fully healthy and “feeling great” according to his agent, Mark Bartelstein.
Joe Harris is expected to be 100% ready for the Brooklyn Nets campaign this upcoming NBA season. pic.twitter.com/wLlAXt6OlQ
— Nets Nation (@NetsNationCP) September 14, 2022
This is an outstanding development, as Brooklyn can really use what he brings to the table.
Last Season Was Rough For Harris
Early in the 2021-22 season, Harris was playing very well, as he was averaging 11.3 points in 30.2 minutes and shooting 46.6 percent from 3-point range over the first 14 games of the schedule.
But on November 14, he injured his left ankle and ended up undergoing two surgeries, one later that month and another in March.
He played nary a game for the rest of the season.
In his six seasons with the Nets, Harris has been key to what they have done on the offensive end, as he is their best 3-point shooter and one of the best 3-point shooters in the entire NBA.
He has led the league in 3-point accuracy two of the last four seasons, and he takes a high volume of shots from that distance, making him someone opposing defenses never want to leave open.
A Joe Harris appreciation post.
Here’s hoping for a healthy Joe come next season. pic.twitter.com/IJF6VQXTTG
— Jac Manuell (@JacManuell) April 27, 2022
Harris’ presence is a huge key in keeping the rest of the floor open for Durant, Irving and now Simmons, especially given that Simmons does all of his offensive damage in the paint.
The 6-foot-6 wingman was involved in some trade rumors this summer, particularly the ones that had Irving supposedly going to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Harris has two years left on his contract at nearly $20 million per annum, and had the Nets decided to move on from their two main stars, he likely would’ve been moved, if for no other reason than his contract.
But now that Brooklyn is back in the business of trying to win the world title, the team is looking at his on-court value rather than the price of his contract.
The Nets Could Become A Fearsome Outside Shooting Team
Head coach Steve Nash is a huge believer in having five adept outside shooters on the floor at the same time, a philosophy that dates back to his days as the leader of the “seven seconds or less” Phoenix Suns in the mid and late-2000s.
O’Neale has a career average of 38.1 percent from downtown, while Warren made 40.3 percent of his treys in the 2019-20 season, his last fully healthy one.
The big question is how Nash will use Simmons, who is both unable and unwilling to hit shots outside the paint, in his half-court offense, and if he will attempt to start him alongside center Nic Claxton, another non-shooter.
But if those issues work themselves out, Brooklyn has the ability to be one of the most potent offensive teams in recent NBA history.