Billy King’s wheeling-and-dealing ways could be on display at the NBA draft when the Nets general manager could make a number of moves in the first and second rounds, Gregg Polinsky, the team’s director of player personnel hinted on Monday.
“Billy is obviously quite creative, as you guys know,” Polinsky said after pre-draft workouts at the team’s practice facility.
Polinsky described a number of scenarios in which King could possibly move up in the first round or perhaps buy picks, like he’s done the past two years, or maybe even draft someone and stash him overseas, as was the case with Bojan Bogdanovic.
The Nets have the 29th pick in the first round and the 41st in the second in a draft that will unfold at Barclays Center.
“Where we are we have to hope that some of the guys that we have ranked higher drop to us and second round wise- is it a guy that we feel like is somebody like Bojan a few years back that we can take and keep overseas for a little bit, let him cultivate, and then bring him and you see the value of that?” Polinsky said. “So I think there’s a bunch of ways to play this. We’ll see. It could even be that we move up to get somewhere depending on what that will require, but obviously that will be Billy and ownership’s decision, solely, once we give them our opinion on what guys might be worth.”
Polinsky wasn’t tipping his hand on the player or position the team is targeting.
But he did drop hints, admitting the club is trying to get “more athletic on the perimeter and it wouldn’t hurt us probably either to get some bigs that were more athletic as well.”
As he spoke, King paced around the clubs’ facility, having just taken in a pre-draft workout with six players highlighted by the presence of Louisville guard Terry Rozier.
The Nets have two more scheduled workouts this week with St. John’s Phil Greene in action on Tuesday and Duke’s Quinn Cook and North Carolina’s J.P. Tokoto on Wednesday, among others.
Nets coach Lionel Hollins could be seen having a long talk with Gonzaga guard Kevin Pangos, who also participated in the workout, as did VCU’s Treveon Graham, Florida State’s Aaron Thomas, MD-Eastern Shore’s Mike Myers, a Camden product, and Delaware State’s Kendall Gray.
(The 61-year-old Hollins, who still retains an athletic build, didn’t look much different from last season despite his pledge to lose 20 pounds on “The Rachael Ray Show” last month.)
Hollins then ambled over to chat with the rehabbing Sergey Karasev, who shot baskets with the help of a ball machine. He still appeared to be limping on his surgically-repaired right knee.
Some mock drafts boards have the Nets taking the 6-2 Rozier with the 29th pick.
Polinsky was coy about that.
“At this point, we have so many guys to go through that I wouldn’t single out one guy at all,” he said.
While the draft is regarded as top heavy, Polinsky believes that further down, the talent isn’t as deep as it was last year, when the Nets were able to acquire Markel Brown with the 44th pick and Cory Jefferson with the 60th overall pick.
“We’re looking for all of the above,” he said of whether the team is targeting a shooter or a big man or a point guard.
Rebounds: The Nets have yet to fill positions vacated by assistant coach John Welch, who likely will join George Karl with the Sacramento Kings and strength and conditioning coach Dr. Jeremy Bettle, who signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team as their director of sports science and performance. The team has yet to replace assistant general manager Bobby Marks, either, after the team declined to pick up his contract option.
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