Crabbe’s must play like highest-paid Net in 2018-19
Allen Crabbe is the highest-paid Brooklyn Net on the salary cap sheet for next season. The sharpshooter will be owed $18.5 million next season, per Jeff Siegel at Early Bird Rights. This is a main reason why he must step it up.
Being the highest-paid player on an NBA roster comes with big expectations.
Last season, Crabbe was one of Brooklyn’s leading scorers, but his play was not consistent. He would have big scoring nights, but would not keep that level of play. Crabbe would have cold-shooting games which would have a heavy impact on the offensive end of the floor.
His offensive game must expand. He often keeps his offensive game behind the 3-point line. If Crabbe can expand his offensive game closer to the basket, it will not only benefit his play but make his teammates better.
Expanding his game will also make his offensive play harder to guard.
Yes, Brooklyn does run a pace-and-space offense, but Crabbe cannot just focus his game behind the arc. The Nets have a number of 3-point shooters that can not just space the floor, but also put the ball on the floor.
This brings more depth to Brooklyn’s overall offensive game and more opportunities to score.
Now, the biggest reason Crabbe needs to step up is for his own benefit. Crabbe has an $18.5 million option for the 2019-20 season and is set to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2020.
It won’t be a surprise if Crabbe does exercise his option. As it stands now, it is unrealistic for another team to offer him a deal around the that $18.5 million price tag. But Nets general manager Sean Marks is an active mover of player options and heavy contracts.
This offseason, Marks traded Jeremy Lin to the Atlanta Hawks. Lin exercised his $12.5 million option for 2018-19 in February, before the 2017-18 season even ended.
Marks also swapped Timofey Mozgov to the Charlotte Hornets. If Brooklyn kept Mozgov, the Nets would have been on the hook for his $32.7 million due over the next two seasons.
With Brooklyn at the home stretch of their rebuilding efforts, Crabbe must have a break-out season and make a big leap. Aside from Crabbe m being the highest-paid Net, Marks will have to make the decision whether or not Crabbe will be a part of their long-term plan.
The Brooklyn Nets have their eyes on making major splashes in 2019 and if Crabbe cannot make the jump next season, it will come to no surprise if Marks looks into trade options.
With all that being said, what kind of season should Crabbe aim to have in 2018-19?