Ian Begley, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Jarrett Allen will start for the Nets at center in their preseason opener on Friday, Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson said.
That means DeAndre Jordan will be coming off the bench for Brooklyn, though Atkinson says you shouldn't read too much into the decision.
"There wasn't, believe it or not, a ton of thought put into," he said. "They've both played really well."
Atkinson also said that he plans to look at several different lineups throughout the preseason. So Friday's starting lineup isn't an indication that Allen will start at center in the regular season.
Atkinson reiterated that he sees having both players on the roster as a positive.
"It's a big strength of ours," he said. "It's great to have two excellent centers on our roster."
Jordan signed a four-year, $40 million deal in the offseason to come to Brooklyn along with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.
Allen, 21, is part of the young core of Nets who helped the club increase its win total by 14 games last season and make the playoffs. So it will be interesting to see how Allen and Jordan are used this season.
Jordan said last month that he sees the competition as beneficial to both players and that he was prepared to play any role Atkinson asked of him.
"I think that Jarrett's done a great job here," Jordan said at the Nets' media day. "....He's done things that helped them win games here, helped us win games here. So I think that we just want to build off of that, but we're going to be competitive. And we're going to bring out the best in each other. And whatever is going to help our team, I think that we're both ready to do that."
No China for Durant: Nets star Kevin Durant will not travel with the team on its trip to China, head coach Kenny Atkinson said on Friday "We decided that it's better he continues his rehab here, which makes sense," Atkinson said.
Durant is rehabbing from surgery on his torn right Achilles. He attended the Nets' preseason opener on Friday against the Sesi/Franca Brasil club. He said last week that he doesn't expect to play this season. Durant underwent surgery in June and there is no clear timetable for his return.
With Durant out and Wilson Chandler sidelined for the first 25 games of the season due to a violation of the NBA's performance enhancing drug policy. Taurean Prince is expected to start for Brooklyn.
Kyrie Irving, who didn't play on Friday due to the fractures on the left side of his face, will likely make the trip. The Nets plan to leave for their China trip on Sunday and will play two games against the Lakers (Oct. 10 and Oct. 12) in the country.