5. Kenny Atkinson kept the rotation tight
The Brooklyn Nets had 15 available players on Friday night. Six of them never peeled off the warmups as coach Kenny Atkinson used only nine players.
That’s a small number for a preseason game. It would be sort of a small number for a regular-season game, unless there were playoff implications and lots at stake.
Spencer Dinwiddie led the Nets with 32 minutes off the bench, but Caris LeVert also logged 32 minutes, D’Angelo Russell played 31 and Joe Harris was out there for 30.
Eight of the nine players used had at least 21 minutes, with only Rodions Kurucs with 12 minutes falling below that mark.
Does it mean anything? Probably not. The players that were rested were either coming off injuries, such as Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, or were older veterans with minor nicks (Kenneth Faried and DeMarre Carroll have each dealt with some ankle soreness).
The bench was made shorter by some roster moves. The Nets waived Jordan McLaughlin and Nuni Omot on Thursday and Mitch Creek on Friday, signing three players who were not with the team against the Knicks (Tahjere McCall, Shannon Scott and Drew Gordon).
None of those three players will remain on the roster after the cutdown deadline on Monday, as the moves on Friday were strictly to secure G League rights.
The rotation may be an evolving animal early in the season as Hollis-Jefferson gets built back up to a full load, Faried gets integrated and when Shabazz Napier and Allen Crabbe are healthy.
But after last season, when injuries and a lack of depth helped to waylay the season, it’s nice to see the Nets have more solid options.
The improvement in the team’s depth is perhaps the most noticeable takeaway from the preseason as a whole and it’s something that will play a big role moving forward with the regular season.