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Prokhorov says he’s done his part, it’s on the team now. No pressure.

Jul 19, 2013, 8:44 PM EDT

Newly acquired Net's Pierce, Garnett and Terry hold up their new jerseys as they pose for a photo with principal owner Prokhorov after a news conference in Brooklyn Reuters

Among the most popular discussion topics among front office types at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas was a thinly-veiled disgust at Mikhail Prokhorov and the Brooklyn Nets. While even elite teams are looking to save costs against the new tax structure — Miami amnestied Mike Miller to save money — the Nets went the opposite direction (and somehow getting Andrei Kirilenko at less money than other teams were offering).

The Nets put together a payroll around $101 million that will bring more than $80 million in tax (as currently constructed). That is not sitting well with other teams.

And for the Nets, the guy writing the big checks expects results. He was not subtle at the press conference introducing Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, as reported by the New York Post.

“I have done what I can. Now I think it is high time for the team to do the rest,” he said, deadpan…

“When I bought the team, I promised to create a championship contender, a team worthy of Brooklyn,” said Prokhorov. “I’ll be proud when we win the championship. I am not a man of procedure. I am a man of results.”

No pressure guys.

As for what the rest of the NBA thinks, about all those whispers behind his back, Prokhorov shrugs.

“I’m willing to invest more to make [the] Brooklyn franchise the best in the league….

“Old stereotypes, they’re very hard to beat and to break,” Prokhorov said. “I respect all the NBA rules and we play by the NBA rules. But I want just to stress again like with [the] luxury tax, I will do whatever I can in order to win [a] championship, but under the NBA rules. Please make no mistake about this.”

We’ll see. Even with all that spending the Nets are not the favorite in the East (I’d have Miami, Indiana and Chicago ahead of them). They need a lot of things to go right to contend — Garnett and Pierce need to be healthy, Deron Williams needs to return to his Utah form, and Jason Kidd needs to prove he can coach. It’s a lot of things to go right.

But that’s what the owner is paying for.

  1. cmehustle - Jul 19, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    Ill say this; Prok is not messing around. This was a memo to Billy King, Kidd, Williams and the rest of the team. If the Nets are not serious contenders for the title and I think we will be, there will be massive changes throughout this organization. You can just tell he means buisness when he talks in that russian accent lol. It must be nice being a billionare 16 times over.

  2. whereyaat - Jul 19, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    Gotta love Prokhorov’s honesty! He’s bringing that English Premier League-style of soccer management over to the U.S.

    Nice to see another NBA franchise do that. Would love to see what Michael Jordan thinks of the fact that the Nets have drastically improved in just two seasons. While not the best team in the league, they are far from the New Jersey team that had fans wearing bags on their heads.

  3. dmitchell624 - Jul 19, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    Kurt Helin: Nets hater

  4. money2long - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    you could tell who the billionaire is in that picture. he could just show up in jeans like ef it. i’m filthy rich

    • rossthebosspalmer - Jul 20, 2013 at 11:21 AM

      He made his fortune selling denim in the east side of the iron curtain, I think it’s his thing.

      • money2long - Jul 20, 2013 at 1:26 PM

        take the facebook dude for instance…mark zuckerberg. he caught some flak for this but still…

        “The 27-year-old arrived for a New York meeting with potential Facebook investors earlier this week wearing a black sweatshirt with a hood, a relatively sobre outfit for the man who is said to have worn his pyjamas to a meeting with venture capitalists.”

        he also says he wears the same thing every day.

    • mrwhiteshadez - Jul 22, 2013 at 9:31 AM


  5. qpoiu1 - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:07 PM

    Certainly one of the most intriguing and interest teams to watch next season…but there’s a long way to go in terms of chemistry and player’s health (KG and pierce specifically)

  6. ji8888 - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:10 PM

    The Bulls, Pacers, Knicks, and even Cavs will be ready to shut this overrated team up.

    • albertmn - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:20 PM

      You were on to something…..until “Cavs”.

      • adzs - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:41 PM

        I was thinking more ”Knicks”

      • ji8888 - Jul 19, 2013 at 10:21 PM

        Kyrie Irving > Deron chubby Williams.

  7. fatsack1 - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:22 PM

    this dude doesn’t have a clue

    • bucsnsincity - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:59 PM

      Actually he has about 18 billion worth!

      • jimeejohnson - Jul 19, 2013 at 10:07 PM

        Money can’t buy happiness or championships unless your name is George Steinbrenner.

    • sieramba - Jul 21, 2013 at 6:00 AM

      Yes he does. He will not spend these ridiculous amount for nothing. It is about this new generation, people speaks and act (dress) the way they want, out of formality but in a more calm casual way. That is not showing any disrespect at all, that’s just the “NEW NOW” is. The do business on their PJ’s, and make money that way than wearing an expensive 3piece suits. About his team, the only reason they will be out of contentions is injures. Barring injuries, they will give fits and trouble in the east. There is a great reason why bringing Garnet and Pierce are essentials to this team, You can not say it’s a bust for it has not started yet, but if this works, you can claim he is a Genius.

  8. patfic15 - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:28 PM

    I am not a man of procedure. I am a man of results. —I may use this on a future date.

    • jcmeyer10 - Jul 20, 2013 at 6:25 PM

      When you’re testifying on your own behalf.

  9. jimeejohnson - Jul 19, 2013 at 10:09 PM

    Wonder if any underachievers will have be sent to some gulag in Siberia?

  10. mattseas - Jul 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Joe Johnson getting over $20 million is just a horrendous contract. He’s paid more than Deron Williams. Plus the lack of future draft picks. The Nets will be stuck in mediocrity for along time.

  11. dezglobal - Jul 19, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    I wish he was my teams owner.

  12. brewcitybummer - Jul 20, 2013 at 1:52 AM

    I honestly can’t see why other teams would be upset. They’ve built a decent contender in exchange for pouring luxury tax money into the leagues coffers. My understanding is that at least 50% of that is distributed as revenue sharing and the rest is used for whatever the league decides. Isn’t this why the owners were so excited so invite a man accused of ordering countless murders into their little club? He spends like a drunk 19 year old and they laugh their way to the bank. It seems like everything is going to plan so I doubt the people around the league who are upset are the people whose opinions matter.

    • shanelsweet - Jul 20, 2013 at 9:07 AM

      The Kirilenko signing for millions less than he’d been offered to play elsewhere smells bad. If they get close to winning it all with his help, it will become a big issue. But other than thinking he’s probably cheating, I’d agree with you that the other owners are pretty happy with him.

  13. BigBeachBall - Jul 20, 2013 at 2:00 AM

    I dont think anybody cares what the molotov coctail says, hes got a rookie coach and a busted up team. They might win a game or two just to appease the rooskie.

  14. socalskinsfan21 - Jul 20, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    I wish the owner of my favorite sports teams had the same mentality – winning, at all costs. refreshing to read.

  15. sdelmonte - Jul 20, 2013 at 10:58 PM

    What is the point of a tax if someone is rich enough to shrug it off? I would much prefer a hard salary cap to this system.

  16. 1historian - Jul 21, 2013 at 11:58 AM

    Will they win it all?


    Will they even come close?

    Maybe, but I doubt it.

    2 years from now when Pierce and Garnett have retired and the Nets are on their 2nd coach (after firing Kidd halfway through this season) the Celts will still have 2 of their (Nets’) #1 choices (2016 & 2018). After blowing their wad in the 1st 2 years the Nets will probably be stuck in average-land.

    The Celts have 9 1st round picks in the next 5 drafts. I look for them in the lottery next year and maybe the year after, but no more after that. Ainge knows what he is doing, and he is working for an owner who knows how to build a good team.

    1) Hire the right guy – Ainge
    2) Sign the checks
    3) Get the hell out of the way.

  17. ghelton03 - Jul 23, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    I don’t see how you can put Indiana ahead of he Nets and there is no way the Bulls can play with either of those teams.

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