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The Brooklyn Nets had an offseason for the ages as they were able to land Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. This tandem with the supporting cast they have will be title contenders next season as Kevin Durant will be healthy once again.

With Durant’s injury, the Nets weren’t expected to be top contenders this year and many people looked at them as a fringe playoff team. Things started rough for them as they didn’t win many games to start the season and it looked like this season was going to be a wash once Kyrie went down with an injury.

To the surprise of many, the Nets picked up their play and with the superb play of Spencer Dinwiddie, they were able to play their way back into playoff contention. Now Kyrie is back and played well in his first two games back from injury.

Things turned south for the Nets after their recent loss to the Sixers and Irving used this time to throw his teammates under the bus. Irving stated that the Nets needed one or more pieces to compliment himself and others and with this comment, we look at two players who the Nets could look to add.

 

Kyle Kuzma

(via Silver Screen and Roll)

Kuzma has been in trade talks for most of the season and they have heated up over the past couple of weeks. This season hasn’t been a good one for the 6’8 forward as he has dealt with injuries and inconsistent play. If the Lakers are looking to move Kuzma, now would be the time and a trade between the Lakers and Nets could prove to be beneficial for both sides.

A potential trade would be Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope for Spencer Dinwiddie. Dinwiddie has been amazing during Kyrie’s absence and he may not be accepting of returning to a bench role. Due to poor fit alongside Kyrie, moving Spencer would be a good idea for the Nets as they could get a lot for his services.

In a role with the Nets, Kuz could flourish starting at the power forward position and statistics back that up as during the 5 games he has started this year, he is averaging 19.8 points and 5.2 rebounds on 46.9% shooting from the field and 36% shooting from three. He could prove to be an amazing 3rd/4th option for the Nets and would just be another go-to scorer.

Caldwell-Pope would add another shooter off the bench and Nets could get an impactful player for the next season.

 

Lauri Markkanen

Credit: USA Today

Lauri has been a disappointment this season and this could lead to the Bulls moving on from him. After an impressive first two seasons with the Bulls, many expected Lauri to take another step this year and potentially make the all-star game.

This hasn’t been the case as his points, rebounds, and efficiencies have all decreased this season and the Bulls play better with him off the court as he has a Plus/Minus Net per 100 possessions is -1.0 according to Basketball-Reference.

If the Bulls do look to move on from him, they could get a nice haul from the Nets. A potential trade would be Markkanen in exchange for Caris LeVert, Rodions Kurucs, and a 2020 lottery-protected first-round pick from the Nets.

Lauri’s role on the Nets would be similar to Kuzma’s role as he would be seen as a 3rd option and a go-to scorer. The fit would be great as his ability to shoot the ball could help to spread the floor and his ability to play the Center position to lead to creative lineups from coach Kenny Atkinson.

With the trade deadline fast approaching, the Nets should look to make trades now and these aggressive moves could prove to be detrimental to their success come next season.

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