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One word to describe the Brooklyn Nets off-season heading into 2013-14: WOW. With Deron Williams, Brook Lopez and Joe Johnson, the Nets were already a player in the Eastern Conference. But after watching the Heat win back-to-back championships with the “Big Three,” the Nets pushed all their chips into the middle of the table by acquiring Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry from the Boston Celtics. Don’t miss the show at Barclay’s Center.
A Brief History
One of the most successful teams in the NBA, prior to the merger the Nets, originally known as the New York Americans, featured stars Rick Barry and Julius Erving, and won league titles in 1974 and 1976. Just after winning their 2nd title, the Nets, along with the Denver Nuggets, Indiana Pacers and San Antonio Spurs joined the NBA. While all incoming franchises had to pay the league a fee to join, the Nets were additionally forced to pay the New York Knicks directly for infringing on their territory. In order to come up with the necessary funds, the Nets had to sell Julius Erving, the face of the franchise and one of the best basketball players to ever live, to the Philadelphia 76ers.
After years playing in various venues on Long Island and New Jersey, the Nets made the formal move to New Jersey in 1977. Rounding out the 70s and into the 1980s, the Nets were led by the likes of Buck Williams, Otis Birdsong, Michael Ray Richardson and achieved occasional success while watching the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers win most of the trophies. The 1990s brought memorable stars Derrick Coleman, Kenny Anderson and Hall of Famer Drazen Petrovic but only four trips to the playoffs without any series wins.
With the dawn of the new millennium, the franchise’s fortunes began to change. Acquiring Jason Kidd, Richard Jefferson and Kenyon Martin, the Nets quickly established themselves as one of the dominant teams in the Eastern Conference. With Kidd leading the way, the Nets reached the NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003.
Since purchasing the Nets in 2009, Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov has proven his willingness to do whatever it takes to make the Nets a winner. Trading for Deron Williams in 2011, building a gorgeous new arena in Brooklyn, rebranding the team from the ground up and trading for future Hall of Famers Garnett and Pierce, Prokhorov and his partners have shifted the balance of power in the East.
Just days after announcing his retirement as a player, Jason Kidd was named head coach of the Brooklyn Nets. Though he may lack formal coaching experience, Jason Kidd is one of the most effective leaders in NBA history. Buckle up, Brooklyn fans - this is going to be fun. ScoreBig gets you there with guaranteed savings.