With the reloaded Nets roster looking promising heading into the 2013-14 season, Deron Williams looks to be taking more responsibility as the team's leader and floor general
In past years, any sort of Nets news in August was probably something bad, such as an injury, bad trade, ill-advised signing, or any combination of the above. But, disregarding last season's playoff team, the Nets have held losing records in all of those seasons. Now, with Brooklyn widely considered to be a contending team in the NBA, the team is starting to take steps towards actualizing the optimistic predictions being floated around it. For this upcoming year, that appears to be player-led pre-preseason workouts.
Spearheaded by Deron Williams, the unofficial workouts will feature 10 of the 15 players currently on the Nets roster, as the remaining five--Reggie Evans, Andrei Kirilenko, Andray Blatche, Toko Shengalia, and Mirza Teletovic--are unable for a variety of reasons. The important thing to note is that three of Brooklyn's big offseason pickups--Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Jason Terry--will be participating, allowing them to begin developing chemistry with some of their new teammates.
With teams quickly put together via free agency and trades, like the Heat and the Nets, the biggest obstacle to immediate on-court success is often a lack of familiarity and togetherness between players not used to each other. Through these workouts, though, and the leadership of a veteran Nets star like Deron, Brooklyn should be ahead of the curve in terms of building an intimidating team--not roster--that will challenge the NBA's elite not just this season, but in seasons to come as well.