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Brian Lewis | NY Post Brooklyn Nets Reporter

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February 6, 2023 6:23 am

Brian Lewis | NY Post Brooklyn Nets Reporter

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February 6, 2023 6:23 am

Brooklyn Nets reporter for the NY Post Brian Lewis joins the show to talk about the Kyrie Irving trade, and where the Nets go from here.


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Learn more at today. Right now we're pleased to welcome Brian Lewis, a pretty nutty weekend covering everything that happened from Friday's trade request until the trade on Sunday. Brian, I know that it feels like we only talk to you when everything's blowing up, so I appreciate your time. But looking at how quickly this happened, what's your reaction to just a few days and, man, it's done? Listen, I had no idea when the shoe was going to drop. I really didn't know. I think a lot of people expected that the shoe would eventually drop.

I thought it might be a little deeper into the process. But once Kyrie made his trade demand, I mean, the turnaround was exceptionally quick to have a deal done already. And frankly, not a bad deal. Well, I'm glad that you say that. How do you like the return from the Mavericks for the Nets?

Some familiar faces. And honestly, I think I'm a little surprised at what they're willing to give up with no guarantee of a future. Right. Well, I mean, I think the Lakers were obviously a team that had interest and there was mutual interest. But understandably, one could see why, and this is based partly on Mark Stein's reporting, but one can see why the Nets might not have been in a hurry to send him to his preferred destination. Phoenix is obviously a possibility, but when you look at what the return is, you get a starting point guard that you can slot into the back court. Right with Ben Simmons and a guy who can be a playmaker at the end of secondary playmaker at the end of games.

Because the way Ben shoots free throws, it's challenging to have them in in the last two minutes of games. And you have a valuable rotation piece and you have three picks, one of which is the first rounder. Now, it wouldn't shock me if the Nets turn around and repackage some of these picks to get a veteran, let's say more in the win now mode. But all things considered, I think the return was fairly solid. Spencer Dinwiddie is back with Brooklyn, obviously spent more than half of his career with the Nets, though it's been a bit of a journey since he was shipped out. How many months ago was it?

I mean, I feel like we could measure it in months. I agree. I mean, listen, Dinwiddie is a guy that left a good impression.

He left on good terms. And this is also a guy who essentially built his NBA career here. You look at you look at Dinwiddie and Joe Harris as the epitome of their player development that they like to count. Now, obviously, they went a little different route when you're talking about KD and Kyrie.

But this is initially how they started this rebuild. And he's the prime example of it. And by now, listen, he was having a borderline all star season in Dallas.

Yes, as Lucas running. That's a valuable piece that's coming back in a piece that's under contract. Also, nearly 18 points per game to go along with five assists. And as you say, he's become a player that, you know, around the league is someone who can heat up, who can score, who can be another option. I guess I'm wondering if he has any hard feelings toward the Nets for being one of the pieces that they felt was expendable. I guess we'll find out when he gets here.

I don't know. He seemed at least in the opportunities that we've had to talk with him to understand that. I think he didn't like some of the things that were said in Washington on his way out of D.C. But I think for the most part, his memories in Brooklyn were pretty good. Brian Lewis is with us once again from the New York Post. It seems like every time there's another dramatic turn with the Nets, we have you on the show. So I kind of apologize for that.

We really do enjoy your insights. Doesn't necessarily have to be over all the drama. That's how it's been for the last few years with the Nets. That's how they do.

It's after hours here on CBS Sports Radio. What would you say is the high point of Kyrie's tenure with the Nets? Oh, goodness.

That's a fine question. I mean, listen, this is about winning championships. So the closest they came to winning a championship obviously was that second round Milwaukee series, where I still truly believe if either Kyrie or Hart gets through that series healthy.

They wouldn't attempt or they wouldn't title. I really believe that. But as it turns out, that's that's a second round exit. Where he gets severely injured. I suppose that's probably a high point now individually. Obviously, we saw Kyrie have huge games. We've seen about 40 point game, 50 point games.

That's a separate issue. But from a team perspective, I guess that's the high point. In your opinion, Brian, knowing that Kyrie played 143 out of a possible 278 games.

And then also considering that he and KD didn't even play 75 games together. And that was, I guess, originally the plan and everything that happened after that to this point. Was it worth it? I'd say so. Yeah. Well, I would say so because I don't think you're getting Kevin Durant here without getting Kyrie here. That's the crux of the matter. You can't get one without the other. Well, you probably could have gotten Kyrie without Kevin, but you couldn't get Kevin without Kyrie.

So that becomes mandatory. Right now, the question is, all right, is signing both of them worth it? And again, I would say yes, because the net roster at the beginning of that season was essentially the envy of the league. And I'll say that because. And I understand that Kevin was a sign and trade. But essentially, you are taking those two in the cap. And you still have an incredibly deep team around.

The only thing you lost was the Angela. Right. So that team.

Yes. Any time you have a chance to go for a title and to give yourself a reasonable opportunity. To win a championship.

I say you have to go for it. And as much fun as the. Harris Laverte team was with the low that team had a ceiling and that ceiling was not a championship. So. If the object is to win. Then I'd say, yes, it was worth it.

Where I have maintained from the beginning. Is that where went wrong was trading for hard. Oh, yes. That I think was a bridge too far. And unfortunately, I think that all started. We can trace that back to when Spencer Dinwiddie got hurt.

The beginning of that season, that team, as it was constructed, I think could have won a championship. But when Spencer gets hurt, eventually you go and you chase and you go big game hunting and big name hunting and they trade for Harden. And you've got that depth and it sends them down the path where now you have to make a trade and you brought in Ben Simmons. And then it just starts snowballing.

That's where it went wrong. But I say going out and getting Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving as free agents, essentially. That's worth.

That's worth taking your shot at. Brian Lewis covers the Nets in the NBA for the New York Post with us here after hours on CBS Sports Radio as Kyrie Irving gets his wish this time and is headed to Dallas or maybe not his whole wish. What does the Kyrie trade mean for Kevin Durant, Brian? Well, I think that's the question everybody wants to know. That's the million dollar question.

Hell, maybe the half million dollar question. Most teams, if not all, are probably checking right now with the Nets or with KD or with Rich Cliven or anybody that they can get any intel from to see where KD's headspace is. I don't have an answer to that. I don't think very many people have an answer to that at this point, but that's what any responsible organization with any kind of championship hopes would be doing. I have no doubt that Phoenix is doing that. I have no doubt that others that are hoping to rekindle their efforts to get KD, they're doing that now. That's also another reason why I think it probably could be in the offering for the Nets to repackage some of these draft assets with a player or two and bring in an impact player before the deadline. There's no other reason than to convince KD we're still going to be relevant. We're still going to be taking our shot and hanging up a banner. And most important, yes, we're still a team you should be willing to play for. So in your opinion, the Nets are not looking to get rid of him.

They're hoping that's not a domino that falls. Oh, I don't think it's the Nets' intent to trade KD any more than I thought it was their intent to trade him in the summer. There are some times when, yes, a team says, I need to part with this player, either because he has a bad attitude or because you look and you say, we are not where we need to be in the win column, so this is going to accelerate our rebuild. But this is not a Herschel Walker from the Cowboys to Minnesota situation. They never wanted to get rid of Kevin Durant, and Kevin Durant had four years left on his contract.

That's why he's still here. And now Kevin Durant has, whatever, three and a half years left on his contract. I don't think they have any intention to get rid of him unless they're absolutely forced to. Now I think what they need to do is make sure that he and they are on the same page and show him and convince him that they can still be championship caliber. I'm not certain that this roster is championship caliber.

It was championship caliber before. That doesn't mean that they were guaranteed to win anything as we've seen, but they were a contender. I think their odds as an example, they might've had the fourth best odds. I'm not really gambling then, but I think they're about the fourth best odds to win the championship. Now they plummeted to about 10.

And I'm saying, I think it would be wise to rejigger the roster again and move some of these assets to bring in a reasonable impact player to a placate Katie and be put yourself in a better position to content because the NBA is open. It's wide open. They say they want parity. Well, they finally have.

It's interesting that you use the word placate though. Like it's been the last couple of years, their focus is going to be on keeping the star. In this case, there's just one left the star happy. I hope that aligns with them doing the right thing for their franchise, but it hasn't for the last couple of years, Brian. That's true.

Uh, it has not worked out, but you're not placating two people. You're now talking about one person and you are talking about one person that when he is healthy shows up every night, he does focus on basketball and keeping the main thing. He is obsessed with the game and he's a much easier player to placate because all you have to do to placate is make sure that you're doing what you're supposed to be doing, which is going for a championship. That's what teams should be doing. And if you do your job, KD will be happy. That's a pretty simple ask.

Just do your job. The novel idea, is it not? And yet it doesn't always apply in the NBA. The listener reached out to me and said, I wonder what Steve Nash is thinking. I do not know. Uh, I do not know what Steve is thinking right now.

I wish I did fly on the wall. No doubt. Uh, Jacques von certainly has commanded the respect of this locker room. And I think the NBA as well for what he's been able to do, stepping into a situation that many would find untenable. What have you seen from him pushing this team forward and getting them pointed in the right direction?

To be cliche, he has everybody at least pointing in the same direction. He's kept them focused on basketball and keeping that the main thing. He's essentially rid the locker room of any excuses or alibis for why they didn't win or why they didn't show up focused or why their heads weren't right.

He hasn't given them any opportunities for self pity or distractions or anything like that. That's one reason why when you know, Katie gets hurt last year and they go five of 16, they go five and 16. So they lose 16 out of the 21 straight game that he missed this time.

This time Katie gets hurt. Granted, the composition of the team is a little different. They lost their first three games, but since then they played winning basketball. And the difference is he has managed to have a workman like team ethos.

That's something that he's managed to instill that for whatever reason, for better or worse, Steve could not seem to get through to them. Alright, so we'll see what happens. KD obviously being the next big question as you point out and he kind of plays his cards close to the vest when he wants to. Before I let you go, Brian, you've covered the league a long time.

It's pending, likely this week. What does it mean for LeBron to ascend to the top of the NBA's all time scoring list soon to overtake Kareem Abdul-Jabbar? I don't think anybody that watched him play ever really had a doubt about his greatness, but to see what he's done over the span of his career doesn't get in trouble, doesn't cause havoc.

He plays out every contract that he's had and to see him get to this point and be about to break this record, which frankly looks unbreakable for a long time. It's going to be a wondrous thing for him, for his family and for anybody that just enjoys basketball. I'm fascinated to see exactly what their dialogue is going to be between LeBron and Kareem. Considering that it hasn't always been the warmest or most cordial, I'm fascinated to see what that looks like.

There are so many different angles to this. It's really, really going to be must-see television. Between that and the trade deadline, it definitely feels as though the NBA is doing its best to hijack Super Bowl week and there's more to come.

It's just the beginning of the week with the deadline looming in a few days. So find Brian Lewis on Twitter at New York Post underscore Lewis covers the Nets. He's our go-to for all of this Nets drama and also looking at the big picture in the NBA. It's always good to catch up with you. Brian, thank you so much for making time for us. Oh, thanks for having me.

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Tastes like wellness just got a whole lot better. And when goals taste this good, it's easy to achieve them. Goalie. Taste your goals.

Learn more at today. The biggest game of the year. The Super Bowl is on Odyssey and Westwood One brings it to you streaming live for free Sunday, February 12th on the Odyssey app. The Eagles have been the NFC's best team. Touchdown Travis Kelce. It's the Eagles versus the Chiefs. The Kansas City Chiefs.

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Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today. The biggest game of the year. The Super Bowl is on Odyssey and Westwood One brings it to you streaming live for free Sunday, February 12th on the Odyssey app. The Eagles have been the NFC's best team. Touchdown Travis Kelce. It's the Eagles versus the Chiefs. The Kansas City Chiefs. The Philadelphia Eagles are going to the Super Bowl again. Catch all the action from Westwood One. Your Super Bowl, your Odyssey. Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-06 08:39:24 / 2023-02-06 08:46:35 / 7

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