This is exactly the kind of rumor/report that the Brooklyn Nets front office wants to spread. This does not make it any less accurate.
network center Nicholas Claxton is a restricted free agent this summer. Several teams looking for an athletic center defense might consider making an offer and trying to lure him away from Brooklyn (for example, Charlotte is looking for a center). Especially teams that have seen Claxton play more of a role as a facilitator at George’s college and think he could bring a bit of that to the NBA.
The Nets will take almost any offer. GM told Sean Deveney of Heavy.com..
“He’s not going to get more than a mid-range offer from a team like Charlotte or Chicago, and if that’s the case, they’re ok with him. He is limited, they can match anything the other team gives him. He’s looking at something like three years, $35 million,” one Eastern Conference general manager told Heavy’s Sean Deveney.
“They don’t sell him like the big guy of the future, but with that amount they’ll keep him around and know they can get him in a deal next summer if they have something better in mind. The problem is they have a short window here so they can’t wait too long. But Sean (Marx) believes in development, and they’re not going to give it up so quickly.”
Brooklyn doesn’t have the depth in the center to let a 23-year-old player who’s progressing every season just walk around in vain. Claxton averaged 8.7 points and 5.6 rebounds per game last season, and despite having an injury history and still being a limited forward, he’s a good defenseman and rim guard and he is progressing. In addition, the Nets have no other options if they want to return Andre Drummond and let him be the lone guy in the top five?
As the general manager notes in the report, the Nets would be better off re-signing or agreeing to an offer for Claxton, seeing how he develops over the next year, and then at least they have a good player with an attractive contract. Still, for a Nets team whose defense was decimated by the Celtics in the first round, keeping Claxton makes a lot of sense.