Begley: "There's No Doubt" Nets' Moves Are Risky

Next dynasty? There's no guarantee that the Nets – even with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving – will win an NBA title

The DA Show
July 02, 2019 - 12:42 pm
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It remains to be seen what type of player Kevin Durant will be upon his return from a torn Achilles, but SNYtv NBA insider Ian Begley believes there’s a good chance KD will still be elite.

“Even if Kevin is 90 percent, 85 percent of himself when he comes back in terms of athleticism, I still think he can be a very, very, very effective player because of his size and because of his ability to shoot the ball,” Begley said on The DA Show. “I don’t think those go away with this Achilles injury. Yes, he might lose some athleticism, some quickness, but he’ll still be able to knock down shots. He’ll still be a very, very valuable player. That’s my prediction once he comes back, even if his athleticism is compromised to a degree with this injury.”

But make no mistake: Between Durant’s injury and Kyrie Irving’s personality, the Nets are no lock to win an NBA title, much less become the NBA’s next dynasty. In fact, one could argue there’s considerable risk in their free-agent haul.

“There’s no doubt,” Begley said. “You look at this season: no Kevin Durant, you bring in Kyrie Irving, and you lose D’Angelo Russell. This is a Net team – credit to Sean Marks, credit to Kenny Atkinson and everybody in that building – they’ve really built this from the ground up. They built a foundation. They built a winning culture there.”

The Nets have gone from 20 to 28 to 42 wins over the last three seasons, making the playoffs for the first time since 2015.

“They did that with this young core, and D’Angelo Russell was a huge part of it,” Begley said. “So that team is losing a player that had really grinded with them to get them where they are today. That could be impactful.”

Irving, meanwhile, will have to lead a young team next season, which he was unable to do in Boston.

“It didn’t work well in Boston with Kyrie Irving and those young guys,” Begley said. “There’s young guys on this Nets team. It’s not exactly the same because you’re gong to have DeAndre Jordan, you’re going to have some vets, you’re going to have Kevin Durant – so it’s different. But the dynamics are similar, so I think there’s a great risk there. And then there’s the Durant injury, which we know is a risk.”