Mason Plumlee gets to play for another Coach K.
The Brooklyn Nets and new coach Jason Kidd selected the Duke University center, who spent four years playing for legendary coach Mike Krzyzewski, with the 22nd pick in the NBA Draft at the Barclays Center on June 28.
The 7-foot-1, 238-pound Plumlee was a bit surprised when the Nets took him because he had not worked out for them, but he’s happy to be in Brooklyn.
“Very excited about the Nets,” Plumlee said. “I didn’t work out for them during the pre-draft process, but who wouldn’t want to play here? The buzz they have going here, the veterans. Really, I thought they had a good season this season. Jason Kidd coming on as the coach, it’s a dream come true to be in a situation like this.”
Brooklyn is getting a very versatile and polished big man known for his rebounding, scoring around the rim and improved shot blocking. Plumlee averaged 17.1 points 10.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks, while shooting 59.9 percent from the field in his senior season at Duke. He also tied for sixth in the nation in double-doubles. Plumlee closed his career ranked in the top 10 in rebounds, field goal percentage, blocks and dunks at the school.
“I think he gives us some athletic ability up front,” said Nets general manager Billy King, a Duke alum. “As Jason was watching him, he can get out and run the floor, block shots, throw the lob. He adds a dimension that we don’t have in our bigs.”
Adding Plumlee will help Nets shore up its frontcourt after it was reported they had agreed in principle to a trade with the Boston Celtics to bring aging stars Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry to Brooklyn.
The Nets would send the rebuilding Celtics Kris Humphries, Gerald Wallace, MarShon Brooks, Keith Bogans and Kris Joseph, along with its first-round picks in 2014, 2016 and 2018. The transaction cannot be made official until July 10 because of league rules. Bogans would be part of a sign and trade. King could not comment on the trade and deflected questions about it.
“Honestly, I can’t go any further,” he said. “You can ask all the questions. Honestly, I can’t. At that time when it’s appropriate, I will address it, if possible.”
For now, he adds Plumlee to a team that went 49–33 this past season — good enough for second in the Atlantic Division and fourth in the Eastern Conference. Brooklyn lost in seven games to the Chicago Bulls in the opening round of the playoffs.
Plumlee is looking forward to finding his role and helping the Nets win in any way he can.
“I’m just happy to be a part of the team right now,” Plumlee said. “We’ll figure all that out come [training] camp. But I’m a basketball player, you put me on the floor, I’m going to play my game. We’ll go from there.”
Kidd names coaching staff: The Nets announced on Friday that Lawrence Frank, Roy Rogers and Eric Hughe will be joining first-year head coach Jason Kidd and remaining assistant Doug Overton on the bench next season. Frank coached the Nets from 2004-2009 during the end of Kidd’s time on the team, and was most recently the head man in Detroit, where Rogers was his assistant this past season. Hughes was on the Raptors bench as an assistant for the last six seasons.Reach reporter Joseph Staszewski at jstaszewsk