Brooklyn Nets’ reasoning for not parting with DeAndre Jordan is ridiculous

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 17: DeAndre Jordan #6 of the Brooklyn Nets (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 17: DeAndre Jordan #6 of the Brooklyn Nets (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /

The Brooklyn Nets have done the almost impossible, as they have added three of the best and most expensive players in the league in Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving, yet still managed to surround them with quality depth pieces.

DeAndre Jordan, unfortunately, is not one of them.

The Nets were able to sign Jordan, who looked like an ideal rebounder and defender in 2019, thanks to buddies Irving and Durant taking slightly less than the maximum Brooklyn could’ve offered.

While Jordan secured his payday, he hasn’t played like someone worth that contract.

Jordan has averaged what looks like a respectable 7.9 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, but his lack of interior defense has been brutal for Brooklyn. The Nets are likely trying to find a way to move off of that contract, as Jordan was completely axed from the playoff rotation.

However, rather than pursue some draft-day trades that could’ve helped unload his salary or throw him into the Spencer Dinwiddie sign and trade with the Wizards, the Nets held onto Jordan. Their explanation for doing so may leave some fans unsatisfied.

The Nets reportedly didn’t try to ditch Jordan’s contract with any sort of urgency because “his bond with the Brooklyn Big 3 is too strong for a deal to consummate,” per Kristian Winfield of the New York Daily News.

The Nets need to try to trade DeAndre Jordan.

Irving and Durant helped their friend get his contract, and they may continue to tell themselves he can help this team, but they’re also two of the smartest players in the league, and they have to know that Jordan’s on-court benefits pale in comparison to the salary he is pulling at the moment.

Last year, the Nets were trying small-ball options like Jeff Green and Blake Griffin at the center spot because Jordan was so ineffective and limited on the offensive end. Even Nicolas Claxton managed to leapfrog Jordan in the rotation. That might be acceptable from a veteran minimum player, but not from someone making eight-figures.

Brooklyn’s offseason strategy has been almost entirely built around how to make up for the lack of services that Jordan provided. They drafted two big men in Day’Ron Sharpe and RaiQuon Gray while adding James Johnson in free agency. The front office knows Jordan is a liability at this point.

There is value in having a veteran on the bench like Jordan, especially with two young bigs in Claxton and Sharpe that need mentoring and coaching. Udonis Haslem has perfected that role during his time in Miami.

The main difference with Jordan, however, is the fact that he is being paid like a starter. The Nets need to listen to Irving and Durant’s input, without question, but they can’t allow the pair to exert such a stranglehold on the organization that Jordan is retained despite doing almost nothing to justify that contract.

Even if the Nets need to attach a second-round pick to take Jordan’s contract, they should consider it. This team is over the luxury tax by an almost comical degree, and any bit of relief helps.

In his prime with the Clippers, Jordan was the best rebounder and interior finisher in the game. Jordan is nowhere near that type of player right now, and the Nets shouldn’t keep letting him coast by thanks to the fact that he is friends with their two star players.

Likewise, KD and Kyrie need to make sure that their feelings for Jordan don’t end up getting in the way of a move that could help this team win.