Jrue Holiday would be a good fit on the Brooklyn Nets
Heading into the 2021 NBA season, there might not be a bigger unknown contender than the Brooklyn Nets. The Nets have Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, but there are still plenty of questions regarding this team and what level of a contender they’ll be in the Eastern Conference next season.
There have already been whispers that this team is going to pursue a third “star” to stick next to Durant and Kyrie during the offseason, but it’s not exactly what who exactly would be available that would fit the mold and among those players available, what could the Nets afford.
One player, however, that makes a ton of sense for the team – fit and both as a price range – is Jrue Holiday. According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the Nets inquired about Holiday at the 2020 NBA Trade Deadline. Nothing materialized, obviously. But it is something that could reemerge during the offseason.
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The big question, of course, is whether or not the New Orleans Pelicans will actually place him on the trade block during the offseason.
While much of that depends on who the team hires as their next head coach, there are many that assume the Pelicans would want to trade some of their veteran players – Holiday being among that bunch.
Holiday is potentially entering the final year of his contract in 2021 (he can opt-out after the season) and should the Pelicans fear that he’ll leave in free agency next offseason, it would be wise for New Orleans to try to cash-in on his value this offseason.
That’s where a team like the Nets could come in. Depending on what Brooklyn would be willing to give up, the Nets could offer a package centered around Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen, or Spencer Dinwiddie as the primary piece.
Adding a pick or salary-filler would likely be enough for a deal to be done between the two teams.
As one of the most underrated two-way players in the NBA, Holiday would be an ideal fit next to Kyrie Irving in the backcourt and could be able to play off both of them offensively. Holiday has been an above-average 3-point shooter for the majority of his career and is coming off a season in which he averaged 19 points, seven assists, and five rebounds on 46 percent shooting from the field and 35 percent shooting from 3-point range.
At 6-foot-4, he’ll be able to check both guard positions which would help the overall team defense considering Kyrie isn’t a great defender. He has the effort but often is overmatched on that end of the floor. That’s where Holiday will complement Kyrie the most.
Plus, Holiday has shown that he could be a good playmaker where he could help the team as they ease Kevin Durant back into the swing of things. It should not be forgotten that Durant is coming off a devastating Achilles injury and that there’s no guarantee that he’ll be 100 percent when the 2021 season starts.
In fact, you can make the argument that it would be unfair to expect him to be anything closer to 100 percent when the 2021 season begins. Even though a global pandemic, which forced an NBA hiatus, has bought Durant another six months, at least, of recovery, we still don’t know what level of Kevin Durant we’re going to see when he makes his return to the floor.
I’m not sure how far a trio of Jrue, Kyrie, and Durant will take the Brooklyn Nets in the Eastern Conference next season, but it might be the best possible – and most plausible – trio that the team will be able to put together by the start of 2021.