One of the great rivalries of my early years as an NBA fan was the Sixers vs Celtics in the early 1980's.
Can we be seeing a rebirth of that? Both teams have promising young players....Embiid could soon be the best in the league if he stays healthy and Simmons looks like the real deal. Juries out on Futz but that is the potential Big 3. Boston has Kyrie, Horford and Hayward who are already established (unfortunately Hayward is on the shelf until next season) plus Brown and Tatum look like stars. Lots of great young talent on both teams as well as role players so could be an Atlantic division rivalry to watch for many years to come
My 1st extended look at JJ Reddick, and he is the real deal. So is Dario Saric. Shame the Sixers don't know what to do with Okafor (esp if/when Embiid gets hurt or needs a "time-management" night off).
I am looking forward to the coming years. Hopefully, that magnificent rivalry will be reborn.
What made the Celtics-76ers rivalry so hot from 1979-80 to about 1986-87 was that they were two of the best teams in the NBA and had at any given time so many of the best players in the league for that era. The Celtics won titles in 1980-81, 1983-84, and 1985-86 along with losing in the NBA Finals in 1984-85 and 1986-87. The 76ers won the 1982-83 championship and had NBA Finals losing appearances in 1979-80 and 1981-82. The 76ers are on the rise now after years in the basement and the Celtics are hot, but it will take some time and the two teams taking one another out deep in the playoffs while claiming some league titles before things reach that peak.
quote:Originally posted by davephlegmball: My 1st extended look at JJ Reddick, and he is the real deal. So is Dario Saric. Shame the Sixers don't know what to do with Okafor (esp if/when Embiid gets hurt or needs a "time-management" night off).
I am looking forward to the coming years. Hopefully, that magnificent rivalry will be reborn.
Really wanted Reddick for the Nets...he has an apartment in Brooklyn and seemed willing to sign but Sixers had the better contract.
I think Covington is a nice player too. I am glad I already got to see Embiid live last season...he's going to be one of those guys people will pay to see.
Even though I hate the Knicks, I have to say Porzingis is a rare talent as well. Even though they probably won't match up head to head in a game, could be a heck of a rivalry if both guys stay healthy
As a Celtics fan.... I'd love to know what the Nets where thinking dealing 3 Unprotected #1 picks for a clearly End of the Line Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. They set the Celtics up for a decade with that trade. I'd love to hear how Brooklyn Nets feel about that one...
The short version is that Billy King is an idiot and universally hated by Nets fans. But he was under a lot of pressure by management...some of the blunders were his own doing but the Russian management also shares the blame with blind ambition
Now the very long story....
It really starts with the bold proclamation of Mikhail Prokhorov that he'll bring the Nets a championship within 5 years (still waiting....he actually sold a huge minority interest this year).
They really wanted to make a huge splash upon moving to Brooklyn and upend the Knicks here. After strking out in free agency in the summer of 2010, the first move was sending that year's number 3 pick Derrick Favors, Devin Harris and 2 First rounders for Deron Williams in February 2011. As much as I would have loved to see a frontcourt of Brook Lopez and Derrick Favors develop, D-Will was at the time thought to be as good as Chris Paul so it was universally praised by Nets fans. Problem was that Williams' contract was going to expire after the 2011-2012 season (well more accurately he could opt out which he did) and the Nets made the trade without Williams agreeing to sign an extension with the Nets. But because he was thought to be one of the franchise players (along with Dwight Howard....more on that) upon moving to Brooklyn, they spent the next yeat and a half doing everything to appease Williams.
Should be noted that in the 2010 draft where thet drafted Favors, the Nets were coming off a 12-70 season and against all odds didnt get the first overall pick. We were really expecting John Wall to be a Net after that season and had that happened, doubt they would traded for Williams.
The other thing is that the guy the Nets was really targetting was Carmelo Anthony (Nets fan called it Melo Drama....Dwight Howard became Dwightmare). But Melo wanted to play for the Knicks and told the Nets he wouldn't resign with the Nets. Truthfully the Nets weren't looking to sign Williams, they didnt even know he was available. Billy King was friends with the GM of the Jazz and the trade was made off the cuff.
But us Nets fans were happy....Dwight Howard who at the time was the dominant defensive force in the league wanted to come here. And the duo of Dwight Howard and Deron Williams was enough to make the splash Prokhorov wanted.
The Nets really wanted Howard now before the move to Brooklyn. I forget the package being offered but it was Brook Lopez,picks and other pieces. Problem was Lopez missed most of 2011-12 with a broken foot so Orlando wanted no part. We thought not a huge deal....Howard was going to be a free agent after 2011-12 and we could just sign him. But Howard....after saying he wanted to go to the Nets...inexpicably opted in with Orlando. I will say he underwent back surgery and never was the force he was before that. But I digress.....
So remember, D-Will still hasn't committed to the Nets past this year so in a panic move after it was apparent Howard wasnt coming, King traded for a shot Gerald Wallace. For one, he was going to be a free agent anyway so why give up much but this Billy King. He gave Portland a top 3 (not lottery) protected 2012 first rounder (plus a couple players thats insignificant). That first rounder turned out to be Damian Lillard. Now its highly unlikely the Nets would have picked Dame since they had D-Will (although he hadnt committed) and the Nets would have taken someone like Thomas Robinson...a bust. But still, this trade infuriated Nets fans more than the Boston trade....The Nets did end up resigning Wallace, who was part of the Boston trade.
Next move was to trade for Joe Johnson, who was a mixed blessing. He had some huge moments for the Nets but a terrible contract that Atlanta was happy to get rid of. Now another King blunder....he for really no reason agreed to to swap first rounders as well. Seemed harmless at the time...we all thought the Nets would be good enough the next few years that this wouldnt bite them in the ass. To be honest, didn't think this hurt the Nets at all. We ended up loving Joe Johnson
So the summer of 2012 (right before the move to Brooklyn) saw a placated D-Will ends up resigning for the max, we got Joe Johnson's huge contract and also extended Brook Lopez to a max contract. Plus signed a declining Wallace for 4 years and $10m per and Mr Kim Kardashian (Kris Humphries who ended up being played behind Reggie Evans) $12m per. So now they are pretty capped out. But all in all, we thought the Nets would at least be good and mostly satisfied and a lot of people were expecting big things from "Brooklyn's Backcourt" (a term that actually trademarked)
They had a decent season, finishing 49-33 and getting home court. But this is where it imploded. After a dominant game 1 performance, the Nets ended up losing in the first round to the Bulls that were without Derrick Rose (out the whole year), lost Luol Deng to an infection and Noah was severely injured but played his heart out (which probably caught the Nets' eye).
So the Nets panicked... an expensive team being embarrassed by being ousted by a depleted Bulls losing a decisive game 7 on home court. Management thought the team didn't have the edge and that was the mindset when they mortgaged the rest of their future in getting Pierce, Garnett and Jason Terry. It was still supposed to be D-Will's team (people either forget or didn't know that Williams had a great second half of the 2012-13 season) and those guys were suppose to be expensive role players. And alot of people thought the Nets would be able to challenge the Heat in the East that year. But Lopez ended up breaking his foot again and Williams had 2 bum ankles and never regained his 2012 form. (Also the trade was initially just to be for Pierce but one of Prokhorov's henchman insisted on Garnett)
But still, it ended up being a fun season after a horrible 10-21 start. They turned it around when Kidd was forced to move Garnett to center and Pierce to power forward after Brook went down. Even Zach Lowe filled the team with praises http://grantland.com/features/a-team-grows-in-brooklyn/
Yeah it went really south after the 2014-15 season (last year they went to the playoffs) and it's a hole that their still digging out of. Having the last two seasons with around 20 wins and not owning our own draft picked sucked...
But Sean Marks has made some good moves...at least good given the hand he was dealt and the new regime is just dealing with all of it as sunk cost and not dwelling on the past (which I know is impossible to In Marks We Trust....)
The whole timing is funny because I have a whole Nets vs Knicks feud going with a guy that works in my building. He was telling me just today he wants to send Kantner to Philly for Okafor. I was telling him no way Philly takes on Kantner's contract becauae Kantner has a player option that I can't see him declining. Dude was dreaming of a Porzingis/Okafor frontcourt.
I like what I see in Nets rookie Jarrett Allen...if Okafor realizes his potential could be good pairing. But a huge dark cloud over this this league rule that states while any team can sign Okafor for any amount, the most the Nets can resign him for is around $6 million. But not many team will have cap space to offer him a big contract