Dysfunctional or not, the Brooklyn Nets are running it back and they will try to win the NBA championship they have been denied the last couple of years.
Last season, however, was not a pleasant one for the Nets, as Irving and Durant missed a considerable amount of time, culminating in a first-round playoff sweep at the hands of the Boston Celtics.
It’s odd to see Irving show any type of real leadership, but he recently implied that their playoff humiliation several months ago may help them down the road.
— theScore (@theScore) September 20, 2022
“We needed that humbling experience, especially going against the Celtics,” said Irving. “It was already built in to be that matchup. We’re gonna see them again, we’re gonna have to.”
Brooklyn’s Dream Hasn’t Taken Place Yet
When Durant and Irving joined forces in the New York City area three years ago, fans there dreamed of the Nets winning their first NBA title with the league’s next transcendent roster.
But instead of winning the borough’s first world championship in any sport since the Brooklyn Dodgers won the 1955 World Series, the Nets have found mostly frustration.
Durant has played in only 90 of a possible 154 games the last two seasons, while Irving has done things that have made observers question if he truly wants to be a full-time basketball player.
He missed the majority of last season after refusing to get vaccinated against COVID-19, and the constant absence of their two best players prevented the Nets from building chemistry.
Last Season’s Sweep Could Set The Scene For Glory
There is a concept known as “failing forward,” where an individual or organization appears to be losing over and over again with little or no success when in reality it is paying its dues and learning from all that losing.
There are many examples of this throughout NBA history, and Brooklyn could become the next one if everyone stays locked in and the team addresses weaknesses such as its lack of defense and frontcourt size.
A sweep such as the one the Nets endured last season could make someone such as Irving hungrier, which could, at least in theory, cause him to be more committed to his team on a consistent basis.
If that happens, the rest of the NBA should watch out.
The addition of Ben Simmons can give the Nets an intense fast-breaking dimension they didn’t really have the last two seasons, as well as an elite defender who can guard multiple positions.
Can’t wait to see some Ben Simmons dimes this year 🤞 pic.twitter.com/vsq3yycH1Q
— Brooklyn Netcast (@BrooklynNetcast) September 18, 2022
The team also appears to be deep in the backcourt and at the wing spot, although the lack of any true centers other than Nic Claxton is a concern.
But the question with the Nets has nothing to do with anything physical; rather, it mostly has to do with the mental and emotional makeup of the team.
Will everyone on the roster be fully committed from day one, get along well with each other and adhere to the roles given by head coach Steve Nash?