On Saturday, the Nets will play their first preseason game as the Brooklyn Nets when they travel to Atlantic City, New Jersey to take on the Philadelphia 76ers.
For a while, we've been saying that the Nets are a pretty deep team, and coach Avery Johnson has echoed the same sentiments. Saturday's first preseason game will be interesting because we'll see some of the rotation ideas coach Johnson wishes to try out.
But he may have already given us an idea of what to expect...
"During Thursday’s scrimmage, Avery Johnson put in a smaller lineup which featured C.J. Watson, [Deron] Williams, Joe Johnson, Gerald Wallace and [Brook] Lopez.
'That’s a combination we like. We think C.J. is a good fourth-quarter player,' Avery Johnson said. 'Deron we feel can score on 1s and 2s. It’s just a matter of how we can matchup defensively in the backcourt. We’d like to move Joe to some three, Gerald to the four and (Andray) Blatche at five.'
Williams said he thinks it’s one of the Nets’ better lineups. 'I think it’s the first we’ve had it all training camp,' said Williams, who usually goes head-to-head with Watson in practice"
This game will give us a good idea of what rotations Avery Johnson wants to experiment with. I'm interested in seeing how he disperses playing time and who will stick in the rotation by the time the season begins.
The addition of CJ Watson to the Nets roster was huge. Thus far, he has been impressing the Nets coaches, and the combinations of lineups that Avery Johnson has available to him by using Watson could make the Nets a deeper and more difficult team to defend.
I agree, I think that C.J. Watson is one of the more underrated signings of this past summer. A perimeter of Watson, Williams, and Joe Johnson is on the smaller side and they may struggle against bigger teams. But if the Nets get into an offensive showdown, then this triumvirate could work.
What I'm most interested in seeing is how the Nets utilize Andray Blatche. He's about 20 pounds lighter than he was last season, and if he can return to the form that he was in for the 2010-2011 season, he might find himself on the floor to finish off his fair share of games.
SNYNets.com will be in Atlantic City on Saturday night and give a first-hand analysis and recap of the game. We'll certainly keep note of the five-man units that get playing time.