5. Faried finally gets off the bench
Kenneth Faried made his Brooklyn Nets debut Saturday night, playing the final seven minutes of a blowout loss.
He showed he still had some bounce, going 4-for-4 with eight points and two rebounds in his garbage-time appearance.
With the Nets struggling against size and thin up front with Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, DeMarre Carroll, Alan Williams and now Treveon Graham unavailable, it has been a mystery why Faried stayed glued to the bench against the Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks.
And, to be accurate, Faried didn’t get off the pine Saturday night until the outcome was all but sealed.
He’s a big body who plays with a lot of energy and he’s a veteran with a nose for the ball off the glass. So why, exactly, is he having so much trouble getting any run in Brooklyn, a team that has struggled to rebound the last two seasons?
The answer is likely his shooting … or lack thereof. Coach Kenny Atkinson has been very reluctant to put Ed Davis and Jarrett Allen on the floor together because of spacing concerns and Faried is not a player who can stretch the floor much beyond, say, the restricted arc.
But at a certain point, when you’re getting hammered by opposing 4s overpowering your defense and having trouble getting the ball cleared off the defensive backboard, wouldn’t you at least consider rolling the dice with a guy who was once a starter for an star-studded USA Basketball unit?
Atkinson apparently thinks not.