Brooklyn Nets: 2 new lineup combinations to lean on with LaMarcus Aldridge

PORTLAND, OREGON - FEBRUARY 06: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OREGON - FEBRUARY 06: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

The Brooklyn Nets weren’t done adding talent after pilfering Blake Griffin off of the buyout market, as LaMarcus Aldridge decided to join Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden after earning himself a ticket out of town with the San Antonio Spurs.

Aldridge’s declining defense and offensive production, which saw the seven-time All-Star average 13.7 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, might not have made him a fit with San Antonio’s youth movement, but he will have a role on a veteran Brooklyn team looking to go for it all and win a title.

Aldridge, who claimed that he can bring defensive IQ to Brooklyn, can still add plenty of value as a pick-and-pop big man, so much so that he could actually change the scope of the Nets’ rotation.

Aldridge’s ability to shoot from anywhere inside the 3-point line and finish close to the rim could make Steve Nash trot out a few new lineup combinations as they prepare for the postseason.

Brooklyn Nets Lineup No. 1: LaMarcus Aldridge replaces DeAndre Jordan

  • PG James Harden
  • SG Kyrie Irving
  • SF Kevin Durant
  • PF Jeff Green
  • C LaMarcus Aldridge

Nets fans have singled out Jordan, who is averaging 7.6 points and 7.3 rebounds while shooting an insane 77% from the field this season, as one of their main issues due to his lackluster post defense. Aldridge might not be much better in that department, but he can instantly upgrade the Nets on the offensive side.

Green might be on a veteran minimum deal, but he has been playing too well to take out of the rotation. This move keeps him as a starter, making Joe Harris the team’s best reserve, and gets KD more chances to handle the ball on the perimeter.

One of the unintended side effects of adding another big man in Aldridge was Durant could be on the perimeter more often than he was when nominally listed at power forward.

Brooklyn Nets Lineup No. 2: Brooklyn’s ultra-big postseason lineup

  • PG James Harden/Kyrie Irving
  • SG Kevin Durant
  • SF Blake Griffin
  • PF Nic Claxton
  • C LaMarcus Aldridge

Brooklyn’s concerns about rebounding and interior defense could be alleviated by this lineup, as the 6-5 Harden would be their smallest player here, with four others at 6-8 or taller.

Won’t Durant on the perimeter be a liability on defense? Possibly, but how many shooting guards can consistently create open shots against him?

This gets the versatile Nic Claxton on the floor next to Aldridge, ensuring the veteran doesn’t eat into his minutes. Griffin’s value comes as a shooter nowadays, meaning that getting him more shots away from the paint could help him excel in his role. His defensive deficiencies will be made up for by Claxton’s presence.

The Nets just got a seven-time All-Star with versatility dropped into their laps. Simply put, this will be something important to watch from Nash’s perspective.