3 ways Brooklyn Nets can avoid leaning excessively on Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /
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Brooklyn Nets, Steve Nash
Steve Nash, Brooklyn Nets. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

2. Change the Starting Five

Durant, James Harden, Blake Griffin, Bruce Brown and Joe Harris have started for Brooklyn in the team’s past 11 games. Harden is averaging 19.5 points per game, Griffin 6.1, Brown 7.4 and Harris 11.3. Harris sprained his ankle in Sunday’s game against Oklahoma City, so Steve Nash is going to start either DeAndre’ Bembry or Patty Mills in his absence.

Durant’s single-handedly carried the starting five. He’s averaging more than 10 points per game than Harden. Against the Thunder, Durant finished with 33 points and shot 9-of-17 from the field. The second-highest scorer in the starting lineup was Harden, who went 5-of-13 for 16 points. However, Patty Mills contributed 29 points in 31 minutes off the bench. He played more than Griffin, Harris and Brown.

LaMarcus Aldridge is the third-highest scorer on the Nets with 12.8 points per game. As of right now, we don’t think that he should replace Griffin in the lineup, but that may be something that needs to happen in the future. That option isn’t completely off the table.

Brooklyn signed Harris to a four-year extension last November. Why, you might ask? To knock down 3-pointers. He’s had promising spurts, but hasn’t been a consistent shooter. Harris shot 36% from three (18-of-50) in the first seven games, but has gone 23-of-38 for 60.5% in the last game seven games.

Harris shouldn’t be counted out by any means, but perhaps him being out of the rotation temporarily will be a time for Nash to perhaps find better fits for the starting lineup. If Brown and Griffin don’t step up anytime soon, Nash will have to starting exploring further options there as well. Durant can’t continue to carry the majority of the weight alone.