The Prokhorov Era Begins

The Prokhorov Era

By: NBASCOUT / Special to

The Prokhorov era has begun and while much has been said and written about new Nets Owner Mikhail Prokhorov. What comes across most is the will to win … sort of like Yankees Owner George Steinbrenner.*

To his credit, unlike George, Mikhail is very charming, affable and erudite. He is also quite interesting. Yet, he faces the difficult challenge of putting his team in order and building a dynasty.

It is easier to wow your public with a splashy display in the media than to actually win. A winning culture needs to be restored.

A new coach will soon be decided upon along with whom to draft and what free agents, if any, to bring aboard. Trades must be considered as well. These decisions will go a long way towards determining the Nets future.

From any vantage point, Mikhail made a good investment. It will become instantly profitable no matter what he does as it moves upriver to Newark enroute to Brooklyn.

Building the Nets brand into a powerhouse as soon as possible couldn\’t hurt, but is not critical. Certainly, the fans would enjoy it, but remember, free-spending Mark Cuban has never won a title though his teams have been playoff bound for twelve years in a row.

The Nets have approximately $26mil in cap space. It goes up to approximately $30mil+ if Prokhorov buys out Kris Humphries, Keyon Dooling and/or Chris Douglas Roberts.

Further, if the Nets feel they can replace PG Devin Harris in the draft or by trade, it\’s always possible the Nets could swing a trade of Harris\’ $8.9mil contract to the Grizzlies in exchange for swingman Rudy Gay, Memphis\’ three first round picks and/or some extra cap space. The same idea pertains to a deal engineered with Toronto for PG Jarrett Jack who has experience playing with Chris Bosh should Bosh come in a package deal with LeBron James to Newark.

Mikhail promises a title within a five year span. Mikhail boasts that he can get the \”best of the best.\”

Remember, Mikhail, it is about chemistry and fit. Many teams with the best talent could not win a title.

With a showdown on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (\”CBA\”) looming, the shape of future contracts is uncertain. Yet, this is an unprecedented free agent offseason that could turn the tide of team\’s fortunes.

Hopefully, Mikhail will fit in without incurring the enmity of his fellow owners. I wouldn\’t, however, gut the team to acquire any free agent talent. A free agent should not require compensation to another team unless some restriction requires a bit.

The Nets are far more than a 12-win team. They will move in the right direction even if no coach is hired.

I would recommend being careful about making your team hostage to players that can\’t or won\’t get the job done. The Nets need players with integrity that\’ll live up to their ability and fulfill their promise.

The Nets need a coach that\’ll inspire the players to win without regard to individual agendas or ego. They need a team that\’ll play like a machine without succumbing to excessive \’hero basketball.\’ \’Team basketball\’ almost always prevails.

NBASCOUT is an independent freelance sportswriter that covers the NBA and the New Jersey Nets. He is not affiliated with the National Basketball Association. Copyright 2010 by NBASCOUT, all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the express written consent of the author. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily this website. You may e-mail NBASCOUT in care-of his wife, who writes for children, at

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