A year ago Sean Marks probably imagined spending his July 4th weekend enjoying the success of Brooklyn, enjoying whatever accomplishments — Finals appearances, championships, etc. — his top team had. The 21-22 season was supposed to be the culmination of a three-year journey, a dream come true. Instead, it turned into a nightmare.
The Networks openly disintegrate. Kevin Durant Trade request. Keri Irving He chose his contract, largely due to the desperate Lakers They were the only team interested in making a signature and trading for him. Last summer, Marks confidently announced that Irving’s contract extension and James Harden It will take place before the start of the training camp. “Signed, sealed and delivered,” Marks said. Today Harden is gone, while Durant and Irving may be out.
It’s been six years since Marks took a GM job in Brooklyn and he’s done nothing wrong, his decisions this summer will define his tenure. It has been a relatively smooth journey for Marx up to this point. He inherited the NBA’s Titanic, a reeling franchise redirecting his picks, and he succeeded. He mined talents like Garrett AllenAnd the Karis Levert And the Spencer Dinwiddy late in the draft. It was Marks, along with Kenny Atkinson, who rehabilitated D’Angelo Russell. He took a team of 21 wins to the playoffs in his third full season, turning the net and not nickson Durant and Irving’s favorite New York team in Free Agency.
However, the title, which once seemed within reach, never seemed so far away. Brands cannot be held responsible for the ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. There is no strategy to prepare for a citywide vaccine mandate and no text for what to do when Irving decided to ignore it. Irving’s absence and its fallout poisoned the Nets’ season before it even started.
Yet mistakes have been made. There was Atkinson, who was fit for 62 games in the ’19-20 season, let’s go before Durant plays any of his games. Atkinson would have been succeeded by Jack Vaughn, the well-respected veteran who went 7-3 to fill in Atkinson in the COVID hiatus season. Instead, Marks swapped Steve Nash, the former MVP whose affair with Durant spent some of his days in office playing a parachute at the Durant. Golden State To work as a freelance assistant — help him get the job. It was an amazing, if not amazing, hiring. Nash has been good, serviceable, but in last season’s playoffs it was Ime Udoka, a former Nets assistant, who coaches the circles around him.
There was a trade for Harden. Harden had his Brooklyn moments, especially early on, when Harden emerged in 2021 as the lead MVP candidate. But Harden quickly soured in Brooklyn – it was said that Irving’s lack of presence last season frustrated him – and even before that, Harden, one of the NBA’s top scorers, looked like a player who missed a step. With Harden the Nets I got greedy. They wanted stars and were willing to sacrifice valuable roles (Garrett Allen, Caris Leverett) and a storehouse of recruiting choices to get one. Harden played less than a full season of games in Brooklyn. Allen rose to prominence as the All-Star player last season at Cleveland where he was joined by Levert, who scored 17 set points in each of the game’s top scorer. Marks landed Ben Simmons in the Harden swap last February, and recovered some of the venture capital as well, but Simmons hasn’t played a game for Brooklyn, and with the Nets suddenly opening up for business, he likely never will.
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Rather than head the championship-level franchise, Marks is now facing a single disintegration. He has set a high price for Durant – two All-Star players and a host of draft picks, sources familiar with the Nets pricing said. SI– Although it’s hard to get. Massive transfers are often the result of desperation. The clippers need Paul George to sign Kohi Leonard In 2019, that’s why Oklahoma City managed to extract gilgus alexander tea And five selections in his first round. Minnesota need A defensive anchor to prop up a team with a superstar pair, which justified sending four first-round picks to Utah for Rudy Gobert last week.
Is there a team needs Durant? Phoenix maybe. Chris Paul is getting older and the Suns don’t seem interested in giving Deandre Ayton the maximum contract he’s been looking for. Toronto It will certainly offer two of its young players and a host of choices. Beyond that, the market is ambiguous. Also complicated: NBA rules state that a team cannot have two players on the maximum entry-level stretches obtained by trade. Curling has Simmons, who takes other players (Pam AdebayoAnd the Andrew Wiggins) out of the mix.
There is a more daring movement, which Marx may have to contemplate. no Durant Trade. Curling was seen as a title contender before Durant’s commercial request ignited a firecracker at the front office; SI Sportsbook had the Brooklyn team at the plus-600, trailing Golden State only to have the best odds of winning a championship. There is no market for Irving, unless the Dallas is desperate or the Nets are willing to take on the Lakers’ Russell Westbrook. Bringing Durant back carries risks, but does anyone think Durant, with four years remaining on his contract, will sit down? Brooklyn will re-sign with Patty Mills and Nicholas Claxton and trade the first-round pick for Royce O’Neill, the 3D winger. There is enough talent, more than enough to win.
The responsibility lies with Marx. Building networks was once Marx’s legacy. Now he decides if, when and how to tear them up. The honeymoon lasted six years and was full of success after success. But for Shawn Marks, the honeymoon is over.
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