The Brooklyn Nets are the NBA’s center of attention after acquiring James Harden earlier this month. It was a blockbuster four-team move that saw Brooklyn bring aboard the former league MVP, helping them pair him alongside Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.
However, the deal did not come cheap. In addition to the treasure chest of future draft capital that the Nets coughed up, they also gutted a significant portion of their depth. They lost several key rotational players, including Caris LeVert, Taurean Prince, and Rodions Kurucs, but the one that has been the most felt early has been Jarrett Allen.
The 22-year-old Allen had been Brooklyn’s promising man in the middle, serving as their defensive anchor down low. They reluctantly shipped him off to the Cleveland Cavaliers as part of the Harden deal, and his absence on the defensive end has been dearly missed.
The Brooklyn Nets should be in the market for a veteran backup center, and JaVale McGee could be atop their list of trade targets.
The acquisition of Jarrett Allen clogged Cleveland’s frontcourt that was already occupied by Andre Drummond and JaVale McGee. With the team favoring the much younger Allen moving forward, they could look to move Drummond or McGee, the latter being the more suitable target for Brooklyn this season.
Indeed, Sam Amico of FortyEightMinutes recently reported that they could look to make a trade for Cleveland’s JaVale McGee if he is made available. If the Cavaliers decide to move him, Brooklyn is likely the first in the line of potential suitors looking to bolster their frontcourt.
Aside from giving the Nets another viable option at center, there are numerous reasons why they should make a run at the veteran big man. With that being said, here are three reasons why the Brooklyn Nets should target JaVale McGee ahead of the NBA’s trade deadline.
Reason No. 1 the Brooklyn Nets should pursue a JaVale McGee trade: The DPE
Three games into the 2020-21 NBA season, the Brooklyn Nets suffered a substantial loss in starting guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who went down with an injury. Dinwiddie recently underwent surgery to repair a partially torn ACL, and the Brooklyn Nets received a Disabled Player Exception worth $5.7 million as compensation.
This means they can pursue trade targets with an equal or less salary in the final year of their deal, and that makes JaVale McGee an ideal fit. McGee is on the books for $4.2 million this season, making their reported interest in him all the more feasible. With an open roster spot on top of that, they can easily absorb McGee and his cheap salary utilizing this DPE.