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New Jersey Nets Getting Inside 2008-08-29 News New Jersey Nets

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News » New Jersey Nets Getting Inside 2008-08-29

New Jersey Nets Getting Inside 2008-08-29

New Jersey Nets Getting Inside 2008-08-29
The team's president, Rod Thorn, acknowledges the Nets got bigger, longer, tougher in the off-season.

But they also got younger. Much, much younger. And that isn't always such a wonderful thing.

So Vince Carter, in addition to his assignments that should include leading the team in scoring, assists and being fairly high on the list in rebounding, has another important task, like it or not.


And Carter sort of likes it for a team that was totally re-worked in the off-season. Only three faces remain from the start of last season's training camp. Eight new players were imported via draft, trade or free agency.

"I never questioned what they're doing and I definitely wanted to be here," said Carter. "It's the way it goes. It's the business of basketball. Sometimes guys get moved who didn't want to. You have to accept it and I'm going to make the best of it. This is my opportunity to step up and be a leader on and off the court."

Youth and unfamiliarity with one another often leads to mistakes. The Nets have three drafted players, three acquired in trades and two signed as free agents. That's eight new guys to replace the likes of Richard Jefferson, Marcus Williams, Bostjan Nachbar and Nenad Krstic. And of the revamped roster which sees eight players with four or less years of experience, only Carter and Devin Harris, acquired in February, have been full-time starters.

So Carter says the team should play like true contenders, "Not, 'Oh we have a new team, people aren't expecting us to do well.' No, let's come out and say, 'Hey, this team was put together because they believed in what we all bring to the table.'

"We all have something to prove. It's an opportunity for those guys who weren't starters or didn't play big minutes somewhere else or were shafted or whatever the situation may be to come here and write their own story."

While they're doing that, Carter will be doing -- the Nets hope -- a little of this and a lot of that and that.

"I'm willing to do whatever needs to be done. If I need to put the ball in the basket more, that's what I'm going to do," said Carter, who averaged 21.3 points, 5.1 assists and 6.0 rebounds last season. "I just want to find a way to help and get this team on the same page."

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: August 29, 2008


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