New York sports have an act for making terrible decisions for their franchise. Like the Knicks, the Nets too, have made some awful trades. The Nets haven’t always made bad trades, though.
They did make great deals when they acquired Jason Kidd and Vince Carter. Unfortunately, the bad usually outweighs the good, especially for the Nets.
5. Nets trade away Vince Carter and Ryan Anderson – 2009
Before the free agency period in the summer of 2009, The Nets traded away Vince Carter and Ryan Anderson to the Magic. In return, they received Courtney Lee, Rafer Alston, and Tony Battie. At the time, the Nets were looking rebuild and they also wanted to clear enough cap space to possibly sign LeBron in free agency in 2010. As we all know, LeBron didn’t go to the Nets. Why would he even consider it? This trade overall didn’t go well for the Nets at all. Even though Vince Carter was on the decline, he was still a very serviceable player.
The bigger blow was trading Ryan Anderson whose career really began to thrive while playing with Dwight Howard in Orlando. Not only did the Nets get nothing out of this trade, they also traded away a 20-year-old Forward who showed promise during a rebuilding mode. That makes sense.
4. Nets acquire Gerald Wallace – 2012
In the middle of the 2011-2012 NBA season, the Nets had lost 3 of their small forwards to injuries. King felt like he needed to make a move to get a small forward who can play now, instead of waiting for the draft. The Nets decided to trade away Shawne Williams, Mehmet Okur, and their first round pick.
The Nets made this decision thinking that a player with Wallace’s ability can help them move towards a win now mode. This was decided despite the fact they were not making the playoffs that season, giving up a valuable draft pick.
This draft pick ended up being Damian Lillard. Obviously, if we went back, the Nets might’ve not drafted him with that pick at all, considering they had Deron Williams. Gerald Wallace, on the other hand, was a non-factor for the Nets. The next season, Wallace averaged 7.7 points on less than 40% shooting and 4.6 rebounds.
There is a lot of hypothetical questions you can ask about what would happen if the Nets didn’t make that trade and kept the pick. In the end, the 84 games Wallace played as a Net, wasn’t worth giving up a top ten pick.
3. Nets trade away Mookie Blaylock – 1992
In an earlier trade that took place in 1989, the Nets traded away Buck Williams for Sam Bowie and a draft pick. That draft pick turned into Mookie Blaylock, who became their starting point guard. In the 1991 draft, the Nets selected Kenny Anderson which forced their next coach, Chuck Daly to choose Anderson or Blaylock.
He evidently chose Anderson, which leads to Blaylock being dealt to Atlanta for Rumeal Robinson. Robinson is only really known for being a backup during his time as a Net, which lasted one season. He later played overseas and now is in prison.
The other side of the deal lucked out as Blaylock was a great Hawk. He was an All-star in 1994 and was on 6 All-NBA Defensive teams. Kenny Anderson was great for the Nets throughout his time there. In the end, though, the Nets gave Blaylock away for nothing which was a huge mistake.
2. Nets acquire Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry – 2013
It is definitely not too early to proclaim that this is an awful trade. The Nets dealt away Gerald Wallace, Kris Joseph, Kris Humphries, Keith Bogans, MarShon Brooks, their 2014 1st round pick, 2016 1st round pick, the right to swap their 2017 1st round pick, and their 2018 1st round pick.
In return, they received Garnett, Pierce, and Jason Terry. The Nets gave up a lot to pick up 3 aging All-Stars for a win now team. The Nets had the highest paid starting 5 ever in NBA history at that point in time. Was it worth it? They went to the playoffs back to back seasons after this trade only getting to the 2nd round once.
Paul Pierce put up a decent number in his one season as a Net with 13.5 points on 45% shooting. Jason Terry also played one season where he played no real big role for the Nets averaging 4.5 points a game. Garnett played for a season and a half where he wasn’t a major factor for the team either.
The Nets had blown up and they had no picks to rebuild. With the team looking just as bad as last year, they’re doomed to be one of the worst teams this season and the next season without their top picks.
The Nets shot themselves in the foot and now will have to go through a very long rebuilding process with only the Celtic’s pick in 2017 and their next 1st rounder being in 2019.
1. Nets giveaway Dr. J – 1976
For all the younger readers reading this right now, yes, Julius Erving was originally on the Nets. Due to the Nets needing more money for NBA merger agreement, the Nets went on and traded away Dr. J.
The Nets, a season before had won the ABA championship, were looking to deal Erving for cash. After getting a deal turned down from the Knicks (typical Knicks), the Nets dealt Erving to the 76ers for 3 million dollars.
Erving won the 1981 MVP, was an 11-time All-Star, 1983 Champion and eventually made his way to the Hall of Fame. The year after the trade occurred the Nets went 20-62 and low ticket sales forced them to move to New Jersey.
The deal was the beginning of a lot of rough years for the Nets, making this their worst trade in franchise history.