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Nets to give Derrick Favors first start Wednesday

Derrick Favors, Nick Collison

New Jersey Nets forward Derrick Favors, right, fouls Oklahoma City Thunder center Nick Collison during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, in Newark, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)


The day was coming.

If the Nets weren’t 9-25 it might have come later — Kris Humphries has played pretty well as the starting power forward for the New Jersey Nets and put up a 12 points and 14 rebounds last game.

But at some point No. 3 pick Derrick Favors was going to be come the starter.

That time is tonight, against the Chicago Bulls, Al Iannazzone of the Bergan Record tweeted. Nets coach Avery Johnson said, “it was just the right time.”

Um, just the right time is against Carlos Boozer? Pretty tough way to start.

Favors, considered a project as a draft pick who would not really blossom for a few years, has been more solid than many expected as a rookie. He is shooting 56.4 percent on the season, is grabbing 16 percent of the available rebounds when he is on the floor, and has been strong on the offensive glass. But what has really impressed — the reason he comes up in Carmelo Anthony trade talks — is Favors flashes crazy athleticism that he is just learning how to use. He could be an offensive force in this league (ESPN’s David Thorpe calls him potentially a young Amar’e Stoudemire). He’s also been a solid defender.

This is not a move about winning more games now; this is a move the Nets hope will pay off right about when they move to Brooklyn in two seasons.