Brooklyn Nets Morning Dish: Intriguing trade idea for Nets

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The Brooklyn Nets Morning Dish returns after an off day to look at, among other things, an intriguing trade idea that could add a star in Brooklyn.

The Wednesday edition of the Brooklyn Nets Morning Dish returns full of vigor and looking at a trade idea that would bring a star to Brooklyn as well as a personality back to New York.

Paul Centopani of The Step Back was assembling a five-trade plan to turn over the roster of the Cleveland Cavaliers that included a deal with the Nets.

The details of that deal?

The salary cap implications of the deal for Brooklyn would be to push Allen Crabbe’s $18.5 million player option for next season off to the Cleveland Cavaliers along with the expiring deals of DeMarre Carroll and Kenneth Faried.

The top-12 protected first-round pick received from the Denver Nuggets in the deal with Faried would also move.

J.R. Smith would have almost no cap implications, as his $15.7 million for next season is mostly non-guaranteed (the contract carries a $3.67 million guarantee and becomes fully guaranteed on July 1).

Kevin Love’s deal, on the other hand, would eat up one of those two potential max slots for next summer, as he agreed to a four-year, $120 million extension in July.

Love’s cap numbers for the four years are $28.9 million in 2019-20, $31.3 million in 2020-21 and 2021-22 and back to $28.9 million in 2022-23. (All salary cap information via Early Bird Rights).

This is a deal that could not happen until late January because of when Love signed the extension.

Love could be the star-caliber player Brooklyn craves. But he’s also the star-caliber player that hasn’t played since the Nets went to Cleveland and laid a 102-86 beating on the Cavs on Oct. 24 and had surgery on his left foot earlier this month.

Smith had some great moments with the New York Knicks, earning Sixth Man of the Year honors back in 2012-13 and has fallen out of the rotation in Cleveland, as the Cavaliers want to see some of their younger players.

Smith is a career 37.4 percent shooter from 3-point range and Centopani also mentioned this:

"On a team with stability and structure, J.R. Smith would be a positive asset as well. He’s thrived before in good situations, something Kenny Atkinson and Sean Marks have built in Brooklyn."

Not to put too fine a point on it, but Smith couldn’t shoot much worse than Crabbe has this season.

LeVert had turned a corner according to TV voice

Long-time friend of the site Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson penned a piece for late last week in which he examined the development of the Nets emerging star, Caris LeVert, before LeVert was injured Monday night at Minnesota.

One of the more interesting observations Robinson pointed out was a comment from YES Network play-by-play man Ian Eagle.

"“There is just a confidence in him. A conviction that he can do some things on the court that maybe he didn’t show he can do consistently in his first couple years in the NBA. He’s healthy, that’s a big part of it.“And I think he is now empowered and emboldened by this coaching staff to go out there and do it. They’ve told him we need you, we need you to step forward and we’ve already seen it in the first portion of the NBA season.”"

LeVert dislocated his right foot on Monday and will be out for several weeks as he rehabs, but there was no associated fracture with the injury and is expected to return this season.

The college bond runs deep

The news on Caris LeVert’s injury that came down Tuesday was a relief to fans and the Brooklyn Nets organization, to be sure.

But sharing in that relief was New York Knicks guard Trey Burke, even as he acknowledged how fickle the injury deities can be. Burke told Zach Brazilier of the New York Post:

"“It’s sad. Even though he’s not my teammate here, he’s like family to me. That’s just the ugly part of this game. Sometimes you have to deal with injuries like that. It’s unfortunate to see, especially the type of year he was having.”"

Burke and LeVert played together for one season at the University of Michigan, along with Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. But Burke and LeVert have deeper ties, both from the Columbus, Ohio, area. LeVert was a freshman at Michigan in 2012-13, while Burke was a sophomore.

"“That’s like a little brother to me. I know he’s going to bounce back. Just knowing who he is, he’s going to bounce back a better player. He knows that I’m praying for him.”"

Burke signed a contract with the Knicks last January that runs through this season at the veteran’s minimum after the former lottery pick began last season in the NBA G League.

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He’s averaging 9.6 points, 2.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists in 20.1 minutes a game this season for New York, battling for point guard minutes with Frank Ntilikina and Emmanuel Mudiay.