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Can Kenneth Faried become the Manimal again?

Kenneth Faried was once a top 10 power forward in the league. Will a change of scenery to the Brooklyn Nets bring out the ‘Manimal’ once more?

The Brooklyn Nets roster saw an almost complete overhaul this offseason. Through trades, free agency and the draft there are seven new players on the roster and that’s not including guys signed to camp or two-way contracts.

One of these new players is Kenneth Faried, who is looking for a fresh start in Brooklyn.

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A few years ago Kenneth Faried was regarded as one of the up-and-coming power forwards in the league. Drafted with the 22nd overall pick in 2011 by the Denver Nuggets, Faried was considered a steal with how he performed in his first few seasons.

His athleticism could be considered his best attribute. His jumping ability is what made him stand out among other power forwards, similar to that of Blake Griffin. This athleticism allowed him to soar through the air for electrifying alley-oops and monstrous putback dunks.

His size and strength allowed him to be a bruiser down low and grab rebounds in traffic.

After the 2015-16 season, there was a drastic fall from grace for Faried. His scoring and rebounding dropped slightly as he only played in 61 games during the 2016-17 season.

Last season was worse for Faried, as he only played in 32 games, which was the lowest amount of his career. A big reason for that was his fall from the rotation.

The rise of Nikola Jokic and Trey Lyles and the signing of free agent Paul Millsap pushed Faried to the bench as he saw his game action all but evaporate. It also didn’t help that the Nuggets had given Faried a $50 million extension in 2014.

This is part of the reason why the Nuggets were so willing to move Faried, because he clearly wasn’t in their future plans. Luckily for them, general manager Sean Marks and the Nets were more than happy to take him off their hands.

The move to Brooklyn might be just what the doctor ordered for Faried, who still has a lot of game left in him. Although it was exciting acquiring him, his time in Brooklyn got off to a rocky start. In August, Faried was arrested in New York for unlawful possession of marijuana.

The arrest happened at a DWI sobriety checkpoint in the wee hours of the morning. Hopefully, that is the only blemish for Kenneth during his tenure with the Nets.

Aside from that, there is a lot of promise with him now on the roster. Faried will most likely come off the bench for the Nets alongside newly acquired big Ed Davis. That could be a formidable duo on the boards as both are very accomplished rebounders on both the offensive and defensive end.

Kenneth has also been known to block a shot or two in a game. If he is on the floor with Jarrett Allen, it could be a daunting task for opposing players trying to drive the lane.

Faried’s ability to fill the lane in transition will be key in spreading the floor, potentially leaving shooters like Joe Harris open. It also doesn’t hurt having someone who can jump out the gym and bring the Barclay’s Center crowd to its feet with a high flying alley-oop.

If you need some reminder of how good Faried was then check this out. In his first five seasons, Faried averaged double digits in points and more than 7 rebounds per game.

This includes his rookie season, when he only played 46 games in the lockout-shortened year, but still averaged 10.2 points and 7.7 rebounds per game.

That season Faried not only finished third in the Rookie of the Year voting, but also was named MVP in the Rising Stars game, in which he went for 40 points and 10 rebounds. His career high in points came during the 2013-14 season, when he scored 34 against the New Orleans Pelicans.

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He also grabbed a career-high 25 rebounds the next season against the Los Angeles Lakers. In 2014, Kenneth was selected to Team USA for the FIBA World Cup.  Along with winning a gold medal, Faried was selected to the all-tournament team.

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