The Brooklyn Nets have four talented rookies on their roster, but perhaps the one that we’ve heard the least about is Day’Ron Sharpe. He was the lone rookie that hadn’t started in a game, but on Wednesday against Chicago, Steve Nash changed that.
In Monday’s loss to Portland, Sharpe finished with 14 points (6-of-6), seven rebounds, three blocks, and two assists in 24 minutes. It marked the first time that he’s scored in double figures. Two nights later against the Bulls, he topped that with a 20-point performance (10-of-14) and seven rebounds in 22 minutes as a starter.
After only playing in 10 games for Brooklyn in 2021, Sharpe’s already played in five games for the Nets at the start of 2022. He’s averaging 9.2 points and 5.4 rebounds in Brooklyn’s last five games and that’s in an average of 14.6 minutes.
The Nets were outrebounded by Memphis, 62-33, on Jan. 3 in a 118-104 loss. Sharpe played in nine minutes of that game and finished with four rebounds and six points. Perhaps it was that specific game that sparked Nash to play Sharpe more.
Given Brooklyn’s lack of depth at forward/center, Steve Nash needs to continue to increase Sharpe’s playing time.
Day’Ron Sharpe can help the Brooklyn Nets with their big man woes.
Sharpe is still developing his game, but for a 20-year-old, his rebounding has been impressive. It’s hands down his biggest asset and it’s allowed for him to open up second-chance opportunities for the Nets.
Since both Nic Claxton (left hamstring tightness) and LaMarcus Aldridge (right foot soreness) were out against the Bulls, it was Sharpe’s time to shine (again). He was tasked with guarding Nikola Vucevic, and thanks to Sharpe, Vucevic was held to 14 points and five rebounds.
While the majority of the talk has surrounded Brooklyn’s other three rookies, Sharpe’s finally getting to enjoy his turn. His performance was no surprise to his teammates, though, who have gotten to see Sharpe practice daily.
Sharpe’s able to make an impact in a short amount of time on the court, and he’ll continue to improve if he becomes a regular face in the team’s rotation.
In two-consecutive games, he competed against Jusuf Nurkic, and then Vucevic. And he didn’t just compete against them, he held his own. The Nets roster needs size, and unless they make a trade before the Feb. 10 deadline, Sharpe’s name should get called far more often than it has in the past.
We’ve said this before, and we’ll say it again. It doesn’t make sense for Sharpe to not play more than he has been, especially given Brooklyn’s rebounding deficiencies.
And since Aldridge is out for the fourth consecutive game, Sharpe should get to log more quality minutes against the Thunder on Thursday. The No. 29 pick in the 2021 draft has officially arrived on the scene, and he’s not going to back down.