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Treveon Graham’s health may force a Nets lineup change

The Nets have started three distinctive power forwards this season, and rotated two times as lots of, hoping to squeeze some manufacturing out of the position. Now coach Kenny Atkinson may have to make a different switch there no matter if he wishes to or not.

After starting up his final 20 appearances, Treveon Graham is doubtful for Monday’s sport in opposition to Dallas with again soreness. He’s also struggling from the industry, taking pictures just 33.6 p.c and 26.8 p.c from 3-place selection.

Atkinson has confirmed Position-like endurance to continue to keep Graham in the lineup for multiple motives. A single, he knows Graham can shoot (43.8 p.c from deep coming into this season). Two, Graham is a bodily and disciplined defender. And three, his solutions are minimal. But now he may possibly have to dig into those people solutions.

“We’ll see. We have to look at it,” Atkinson said when questioned about lineup adjustments in an exertion to snap a three-sport skid in opposition to the Mavericks. “My task as a head coach is to enable these men out of these struggles. If that means a lineup improve, we’ll do it. If that means sticking with the very same men, we’ll do it. It’s some thing we have to talk about, and place almost everything underneath thought.”

Treveon Graham
Treveon GrahamRobert Sabo

Even if Graham is available Monday — or would make a swift restoration for Wednesday in opposition to Cleveland — hoping a different power ahead, this sort of as Rodions Kurucs, is a thought.

“[Graham brings] toughness, self-discipline. You give him a job, he does it. He’s a middle linebacker for us. You belief him. There is no breakdowns,” Atkinson said. “I know it is not flashy and alluring and all that stuff, but I believe it wins. He’s aided us acquire.

“When he would make shots, it seriously can help us. I have been stating this. We’re heading to continue to keep allowing him shoot it. We’ve viewed him make it in preseason. Before he acquired hurt, he seriously confirmed he could shoot the ball. He’s acquired to get again to taking pictures it.”

Therein lies the rub: Graham is a shooter who hasn’t shot it. He’s just 3-of-13 from deep in his final three game titles, with a unfavorable furthermore-minus in all of them. He bottomed out Saturday in Miami in which he was a minus-11 and permitted Kelly Olynyk to pour in a sport-substantial 25 points.

The Nets experienced started Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Jared Dudley at power ahead earlier in the season. Hollis-Jefferson provides changeover offense. Dudley, who has three DNPs and just 27 minutes logged because returning from a hamstring pull just after the All-Star break, has a substantial basketball IQ and spaces the flooring. But neither will enable the current rebounding woes.

Brooklyn has solutions, with Kurucs and DeMarre Carroll having played stretch-4 in tiny-ball lineups for minimal stretches. This could be a extended stretch.

Kurucs experienced obviously strike the rookie wall, not shocking thinking of how minimal he’d played at Barcelona. But just after submitting horrid taking pictures splits of just .270/.231/714 in his final eight game titles in advance of the All-Star break, he’s looked refreshed coming out of the layoff, slashing .500/.250/.917. The 6-foot-9 Latvian has a favourable furthermore-minus in 4 of his five game titles because the break, and can enable on the boards.

“His electrical power is again. He experienced that tip-dunk [Friday]. I like what I see. He was in a minimal little bit of a rut there for a though, but he’s occur again to everyday living. I have to have to do a superior task locating minutes for him at the 4 and at the three,” Atkinson said. “The excellent matter about him is you can throw him at either position. Obtaining him minutes is a minimal more difficult now, but we’ve acquired to do it. He’s heading to continue to be in the rotation.”

Allen Crabbe experienced a fingernail ripped off Saturday, but it was taped again down and he’ll be high-quality for Monday.

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