Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie done for the season after coronavirus diagnosis
And now the Nets will be without Spencer Dinwiddie, who has been battling a symptomatic case of coronavirus.
After another positive test yesterday and considering the symptoms, @BrooklynNets, team doctors and I have decided that it would be in the best interest for me and the team that I do not play in Orlando. I will be supporting the guys every step of the way! #AudienceOfOne— Spencer Dinwiddie (@SDinwiddie_25) July 7, 2020
The Eastern Conference playoff race is shaping up to be ugly. The Nets are decimated. The Wizards won’t have their best and second-best players, Bradley Beal and Davis Bertans. The Magic will probably be without Jonathan Isaac (who looked so promising) and Al-Farouq Aminu.
I don’t know how Brooklyn will proceed. Tanking raises ethical questions in normal times. When sending players to an uncomfortable bubble in the midst of a pandemic, it’s especially troublesome.
But the Nets have a clear incentive: They’ll keep their first-round pick only if they miss the playoffs. Otherwise, it goes to the Timberwolves (via the Hawks from the Taurean Prince trade).
Presumably, Brooklyn – with a healthy Durant and Irving and maybe a third star – would convey a much later pick next season (when the pick is still lottery protected).
In the meantime, Caris LeVert can step up as lead guard with Irving and Dinwiddie sidelined. Chris Chiozza should get an opportunity at point guard. Garrett Temple can play a larger role. Tyler Johnson adds backcourt depth.
Jordan’s and Claxton’s absences leave Jarrett Allen as the Nets’ only option at center (which could be freeing after a season of having to look over his shoulder). But he could use a backup. Maybe Amir Johnson.
Marc Stein of The New York Times:
Veteran center Amir Johnson has emerged as a prime target for the Nets, league sources say, in their search for roster reinforcements— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 7, 2020
Brooklyn has been on the hunt for a big man since losing DeAndre Jordan and Nicolas Claxton
Johnson, 33, hasn’t played in the NBA this season. He spent the last couple seasons with the 76ers, becoming gradually less effective. But he’s a savvy veteran who should fit in quickly.