All-Time Brooklyn/New Jersey Nets Team

Today we will be assembling an all-time team for the Brooklyn (formerly New Jersey) Nets.

This franchise was originally created in 1967 and was first known as the New Jersey Americans. In 1968 they became the New York Nets and were a part of the ABA (American Basketball Association). They then joined the NBA in 1976 as part of the ABA/NBA merger. They were one of four teams to join the NBA from the ABA along with the San Antonio Spurs, Indiana Pacers and Denver Nuggets. After Joining the NBA, they moved to New Jersey and became the New Jersey Nets, which stood until 2012. As part of the ABA and NBA merger, they had to pay the New York Knicks $4.8 Million along with the $3.2 Million fee that they had to pay to join the NBA- a financial scenario which led them to ultimately trade superstar Julius Erving. After 2012, they moved back to New York in the borough of Brooklyn, where they now are known as the Brooklyn Nets.

This team has all sorts of legendary players, from the likes of Rick Barry and Kevin Garnett, to Jason Kidd and Kevin Durant. Let’s take a look at all of the players from the entire Nets history, and assemble the best possible roster. All stats from the players are courtesy of Basketball Reference.

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Starters

PG – Jason Kidd

The Hall of Fame Point Guard turned coach is a lock for this list due to being a part of many good teams over the years. He was a key part of the Nets two runs to the NBA Final and was an integral part of other very good Nets teams that made deep playoff runs. He also won an NBA championship with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011. In addition, he was a key piece for the Knicks in 2013 during their playoff run, despite being 39 years old. He was also one of the few Point Guards that could regularly get triple doubles in an era where that was much less common. He’s one of the league’s all time best playmakers, bottom line. In addition, he’s known for being a good defensive player and wasn’t really a good shooter until late into his career. He has career averages of 12.6 points, 6.3 rebounds (high for a point guard) and 8.7 assists for his career. He also has put up averages of 40% field Goals, 34.9% from 3 as well as 78.5% from the line.

SG – Vince Carter

A sure fire Hall of Famer when it’s his turn, Carter is the first NBA player to play in 4 different Decades. He played in the 1990’s, 2000’s, and 2010’s as well as in the 2020’s (in his last season in Atlanta). The high flyer retired from the NBA on the day when the NBA suspended their season due to Covid-19 on March 11, 2020. The slam dunk champion first started to play for the Nets in 2004 when he was traded there from the Toronto Raptors. He, along with Jason Kidd, and Richard Jefferson were my first memories of watching the Nets play, when I first became a fan in 2006. He ended up playing for the Nets for parts of five seasons, leaving the Nets in another trade in 2009. For his career Carter averaged 16.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists a game. In addition, Carter had 43.5% from the field, 37.1 from 3 and 79.8% from the line. Carter actually ended up improving his 3 point percentages, just like Kidd did later on his career.

SF – Julius Erving

Dr. J is one of the most firm locks for this all time list. Ewing has career averages of 24.2 points a game, 8.5 rebounds a game and 4.2 assists a game. He also has percentages of 50.6% from the field, 29.8% from 3 and 77.7% from the line. Just like Vince Carter, Dr J is also a high flyer and was one of the Nets first legends. Unfortunately the Nets had to trade him to the Philadelphia 76ers in order to pay their fee to join the NBA, as they were one of the four teams to join from the ABA. Despite spending most of his career on the 76ers, Erving did play three seasons for the Nets (when they were in the ABA) and is a legend for their team before the trade.

PF – Kevin Durant

The multi time all star, Durant is another lock to be on the list. Despite this being only his third season on the team, Durant has made his impact on the Nets, elevating them to NBA title contenders with Kyrie Irving and James Harden. For his career he averages 27.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 4.2 assists a game. He also has averages of 49.5% from the field, 38.3% from 3 and 88.3% from the line. The 6’10 forward is a two time NBA champion, a multiyear scoring champion, and has many more accolades through his career. He also was an NBA MVP in 2014. He puts in work on and off the court, owning his own company- Thirty Five Ventures with partner Rich Kleiman.

C – Brook Lopez

Lopez, who now plays for Milwaukee, first spent a few years on the Deron William-led Brooklyn Nets teams as the starting Center. Lopez’ name is plastered all over the franchise record books. He’s the Nets Career leader in field goals, field goal attempts, 2-point field goal attempts, points and offensive win shares. For his career, he averaged 16.5 points a game, 6.3 rebounds and 1.4 assists a game. He also has averages of 49.4% from the field, 34% from 3 and 79.6% from the line. A stretch five, who can shoot threes and space the floor, Lopez was at first a low post offensive force in the beginning of the day with the Nets. His ability to change his game mid career from a low post presence to a 3 point sharp shooter helps him fit with a multitude of players and different teams as well.

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Bench

SG – Drazen Petrovic

A beloved player in the Nets history who played three seasons on the team before his untimely death at 28 years old11. The beloved Nets legend has career averages of 15.4 points, 2.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists. This is along with 50.6% field goal, 43.7% from 3 and 84.1% from the line.

PF – Buck Williams

Another Nets legend that is the career leader in many of the Nets all time stats. He’s the career leader in Games, 2-point field goals, minutes played, free throws, offensive rebounds and many more stats. The 6’8, 2l5 lb Power forward played his first eight seasons on the Nets as well as spent his last two years on the New York Knicks before retiring in 1998. Williams has career averages of 12.8 points, 10 rebounds and 1.3 assists. In addition he also has percentages of 54.9% field goal percentage, 16.7% from 3 and 66.4% from the line.

PG – Deron Williams

The multi year NBA all star (and one time boxer) Deron Williams ended up on the Nets in 2011 in a surprise trade between the Nets and Utah Jazz. He was at one time compared to Chris Paul as one of the best point guards in the league, with both of them coming into the league in 2005. He was the face of the Nets when they first moved back to New York (Specifically Brooklyn) from New Jersey in 201215. He ended up playing for the Nets for five seasons. Williams has career averages of 16.3 points, 3.1 rebounds and 8.1 assists. He also has percentages of 44.5% from the field, 35.7% from 3 and 82.25% from the line.

SF – Richard Jefferson

This high-flying former Net turned color analyst after retiring in 2017 from a 17-year NBA career. He’s also a main character that many Nets fans think of when reminiscing on the teams from the early 2000’s era. Jefferson is an NBA Champion and has been on many final teams and is a solid role player, who can score and is a solid defender when he needs to do so. Jefferson has career averages of 12.6 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists. In addition he also averaged 46.4% from the field, 37.6% from 3 and 76.8% from the line.

PF – Kenyon Martin

The athletic veteran journeyman, Martin ended up playing for five different teams. Although he spent most of his years on the Denver Nuggets, he did start his career on the Nets. He was part of those Jason Kidd NBA final teams17. Known for his athleticism and defense, Martin has made his career off his defensive abilities and hustle. He has career averages of 12.3 points a game, 6.8 rebounds and 1.9 assists. He also averaged 48.3% from the field, 23.4% from 3 and 62.9% from the line.

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PG – Kyrie Irving

Joining Kevin Durant in Brooklyn in the summer of 2019, Kyrie Irving is also an NBA champion in 2016 with the Cleveland Cavs. He was the one who won it for Cleveland with the game winner to win the championship for the Cavs. Kyrie is known for his amazing ball handling and lethal mid range shooting ability. He’s currently in his third season playing (sort of) in Brooklyn with Durant. Irving has career averages of 22.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 5.7 assists. He has averages of 47% from the field, 39.1% from 3 and 88.1% from the line.

SG – James Harden

Joining the Nets as the third piece to Durant and Irving, Harden is only in his second season as a net but due to injuries and other circumstances Harden is now at times the only Nets star that has played most of the season. Harden is doing a solid job carrying the Nets to the 29-19 record (as of Friday, January 28). The beard did well for himself starting off as a six man in Oklahoma City Thunder to becoming a Multi time all star on the Nets and the Houston Rockets. Harden has career averages of 25 points, 5.6 rebounds and 6.7 assists. He has career shooting averages of 44.3% from the field, 36.2% from 3 and 85.9% from the line.

SF – Bernard King

Known to be more of a New York Knicks legend, King actually spent his first two years as a Net and spent his last season with the Nets as well. King averaged 20.2 Points for the Nets as well. King has career averages of 22.5 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists. He posted career averages of 51.8% from the field, 17.2% from 3 and 51.9% from the line.

Honorable Mentions

  • Michael Ray Richardson
  • Jayson Williams
  • Derrick Coleman
  • Kenny Anderson
  • Joe Johnson
  • Jarrett Allen
  • Keith Van Horn
  • Nenad Krstic
  • Stephon Marbury
  • Rick Barry
  • Joe Harris 
  • Billy Paulz
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Born and Raised in the Greater NYC Area. Long time New York Knicks fan as well as a Huge NBA fan since 2006. You can follow him on twitter at @KyosotaComics.

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