The Brooklyn Nets will sign veteran point guard Goran Dragic for the remainder of the regular season, after he agreed to a contract buyout with the San Antonio Spurs.
Dragic appeared in only five games with the Toronto Raptors this season before they agreed to find him a new team through a trade. The Raptors traded him shortly before the deadline to the San Antonio Spurs. Dragic did not suit up for the Spurs before they worked out a contract buyout. That allowed him to become a free agent with the Nets and LA Lakers eying his sharpshooting skills and locker room leadership.
At the peak of his career spanning 13 seasons, Dragic averaged 20.3 ppg and shot 40.5% from 3-point range with the Miami Heat in the 2016-17 season. He’s a career 36.4% shooter from downtown. He’s been an All-Star and previously won the 2014 NBA Most Improved Player.
When the Miami Heat had success in the 2020 NBA Playoffs, Dragic was an important part of their deep run. Dragic averaged 19 ppg during their magical run, but he missed out in the NBA Finals when he suffered a painful plantar fasciitis injury. Depending on who you talk to, the Heat could’ve beaten the LA Lakers in the 2020 NBA Finals if Dragic was healthy.
In order to clear a roster spot, the Nets waived Jevon Carter to make room from Dragic.
The Brooklyn Nets look a whole lot different heading into the last quarter of the regular season after the James Harden and Ben Simmons trade. The Nets sent Harden and Paul Milsap to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, and two first-round draft picks.
Simmons has yet to suit up with the Nets, but they expect him to join the team sooner than later.
The addition of Curry provides them with a great floor spacer and perimeter shooter. Simmons has his offensive flaws, especially free-throw shooting, but he’s an excellent defender who can guard all five positions. Andre Drummond might not see much playing time, but he’s fun in the locker room and well-respected as everyone’s favorite teammate.
The addition of Dragic provides the Nets with another back up shooting guard as a battle-tested veteran who can shoot lights out in crunch time. He appeared in 56 playoff games, including 37 as a starter.
The Nets (31-28) have 23 games remaining in the regular season. They currently occupy the #8 seed in the Eastern Conference and would head into the play-in tournament if the season were to end today. As bad as they played, they’re only seven games out of first place in a tight race in the east. Only 2.5 games separate the top five teams, with the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls jockeying for the #1 seed.
The Nets recently ended an 11-game losing streak and headed into the All-Star Break winning two out of their previous three games. According to a recent update by DraftKings, the Nets are +450 odds to win the 2022 NBA Championship. The Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors are co-favorites at +425 odds. The Philadelphia 76ers jumped to +700 odds after the Harden/Simmons trade.