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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 29, 2011 at 07:59:20 PM

After the Nets brought in draft pickups MarShon Brooks, Jordan Williams and Bogan Bogdanovic to meet the local media Monday, they promptly sent the ones that will be with them next season to California to work out.

This made perfect sense because of the labor situation. If there is a lockout -- as expected -- starting Friday there can be no contact between the players and the teams.

So Brooks and Williams flew to meet coach Avery Johnson and general manager Billy King at P3 in Santa Barbara for some training until they can’t talk to him anymore.

Brooks and Williams were given what the Nets want them to do this summer, what workouts, what things they need to improve on –- basically everything they should do to make sure they’re ready when the work stoppage ends and/or

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Apr 13, 2011 at 11:24:32 PM

The Nets ended the first season of the Mikhail Prokhorov/Avery Johnson/Billy King era with 24-58 record after a tough, hard-fought 97-92 loss to Chicago Bulls last night.

The Nets doubled last year’s win total but still have plenty of work to do to become not only a playoff team, but a championship contender as Prokhorov promised. The next phase of that process begins now, but here’s a look back at that first year.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: Naturally, if Deron Williams would have been with the Nets all season, it would have been him. He proved that in his 12 games as a Net. But for the duration of the season, it was Kris Humphries. He did it all for the Nets in terms of defense, dirty work, physical play and rebounding and finished the season with career-high averages of 10.0

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Mar 9, 2011 at 11:59:31 PM

Brook Lopez didn’t remember the last time the Nets won three straight games, which isn’t surprising. Most players don’t recall numbers like that.

But if anyone should have remembered it was Lopez. He’s the only player left from the franchise’s last three-game winning streak, which came during his rookie season in late January/early February 2009.

The Nets matched that elusive feat last night with a Lopez-led 94-90 victory over the Golden State Warriors at The Rock that was impressive for many reasons.

* They did it without their new All-Star point guard Deron Williams. He was back in Dallas to be with his wife Amy, who gave birth to their fourth child, Desmond, yesterday.

* Lopez was dominant, scoring 26 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. He scored the last

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 27, 2011 at 05:31:14 PM

Let’s forget about the Nets’ defense for a little bit, since they’ve forgotten about playing on that end of the court anyway lately. But their offense, even though they still struggle making shots, looks infinitely better since Deron Williams was acquired.

This was expected, but no one could have expected 17 assists in his second game as a Net, on the second game of a back-to-back, and on a night when his team misses 60 percent of its shots.

The Nets knew what they were getting when they sent Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, two first-round picks and $3 million cash to Utah. Williams is one of the top three point guards in the game and may be first overall.

Nets general manager Billy King made a brilliant move to secure Williams when it appeared they weren’t going

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 26, 2011 at 12:54:22 AM

SAN ANTONIO – Mikhail Prokhorov attended his first Nets road game because he wanted to personally meet and welcome his new superstar point guard Deron Williams to the organization.

Prokhorov did the right thing by staying mostly out of the public eye and letting this night be all about Williams. Prokhorov had a private room at the AT&T Center, where he met Williams for the first time.

The Russian billionaire didn’t comment or gloat about the Nets’ big catch, even though he could have and some owners probably would have after some of the things that were written and said about Prokhorov’s inability to sell the biggest names on his team.

This night was about Williams, and in the Nets’ 106-96 loss to the Spurs, you could see what kind of impact he is going

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 25, 2011 at 12:34:49 AM

The Nets trade for Deron Williams and almost everyone immediately looks at the negative: that he can opt out of his contract after next season and become a free agent.

Maybe it’s because we live in the metropolitan area and we’re taught to be cynical, but too many tweeters, bloggers, fans and writers are already saying Williams is gone after a year and a half, that he is a 1 ½-year rental.

Maybe it’s true, but let it play out first. That’s what Williams says, what the Nets say, and really what should be done. But in this world where everyone wants up-to-the-minute information and want to be the first to say, we always said he would never stay, just let it play out.

“I’m just looking forward to the opportunity right now,” Williams said

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 23, 2011 at 09:49:09 PM

After the nearly six-month long pursuit of Carmelo Anthony ended with him going to the Knicks, almost everyone thought the Nets were going to muddle through a dreary finish to this season, hoping that Derrick Favors showed some development and Brook Lopez made his presence felt on the glass.

If Lopez rebounded as well as general manager Billy King did from the conclusion of the 'Melo-drama, the Nets center would lead the league in boards.

King stunned everyone in the NBA Wednesday when he pulled off a heist that brought All-Star point guard Deron Williams to the Nets.

No one saw this coming as the Nets were expected to make minor moves involving Devin Harris and Troy Murphy. But King pulled a rabbit out of the hat and stole some thunder from the Knicks, who hosted Anthony’s press

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 22, 2011 at 04:45:23 PM

This time the Nets really are out of the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes. He’s a Knick and the Nets are left to try to make moves that don’t hurt their future salary cap flexibility, but also help them on the court now and next year.

Devin Harris and Troy Murphy are the Nets most likely to pack their bags – although something tells me their suitcases are packed and by their doors as they just await a call.

They know they’re going, and the Nets aren’t getting anyone back as exciting as Anthony, a potential franchise changer. He was the only player available of that ilk on the trade market and the Nets did everything – literally, everything – they could to get him.

General manager Billy King put together countless trade proposals to appease Denver

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 19, 2011 at 01:04:47 PM

After all that has happened with murals and billboards, television commercials and pointed comments, it is fitting that it comes down to the Nets and the Knicks for Carmelo Anthony.

As I heard Evan Roberts say on WFAN this morning, it’s Jay-Z and JD (James Dolan). It’s more than that, though.

It’s Mikhail Prokhorov, Jay-Z, Billy King and Brett Yormark versus Dolan. (Advantage Nets)

It’s Newark/Brooklyn versus New York City (Advantage Knicks)

It’s Brook Lopez versus Amar’e Stoudemire (Advantage Knicks)

It’s a more controlled offense and a commitment to defense versus a free-wheeling, fast-paced, score-at-will offense and defend every few possessions. (Advantage Knicks)

When you lay it out like that, it seems the Knicks will win the Anthony

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Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 17, 2011 at 12:00:33 AM

BOSTON – The Nets didn’t want to go into the All-Star break the way they did, but you could have seen this coming all the way around.

We’re not just talking about the Nets’ 94-80 loss to the Celtics last night. But that the Nets and the Nuggets have had a recent conversation about Carmelo Anthony.

Suddenly, Nets’ fans are hopeful again. Hopeful the Nets can get something done for Anthony, without using Derrick Favors or Devin Harris or draft picks. That’s not realistic, but that’s also going too far too soon.

At this point, these talks could just be exploratory, could be Denver reaching out to see if the Nets are still interested in Anthony after owner Mikhail Prokhorov removed them the talks last month. Of course, the Nets are interested still.

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