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Mason Plumlee says of course he wants to start for Nets

Aug 9, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

Mason Plumlee, DeMarcus Cousins Mason Plumlee, DeMarcus Cousins

Mason Plumlee is having a breakout summer, so much so that there is a chance the second-year center of the Nets could make the USA Basketball roster for Spain. Coach Mike Krzyzewski has been surprised and impressed by his play — which is saying something because Coach K saw him for four years at Duke.

He wants to carry that over to the NBA season and start for the Nets… except that starting center job belongs to Brook Lopez. Arguably the best offensive center in the NBA. A guy who missed most of last season with a broken foot but who will be back ready to go for training camp. Are you really going to start Plumlee at the four over Kevin Garnett (and take minutes away from Mirza Teletovic)?

Still you have to like what Plumlee told Mike Mazzo of ESPNNewYork.com.

“Oh yeah,” Plumlee replied this week when asked if he wanted to start. “What player doesn’t wanna start?”

Nets coach Lionel Hollins was out in Las Vegas watching Plumlee during the first part of Team USA training camp a week ago. (A number of coaches with players on the roster were out to watch their charges.)

“[The Nets coaches] were out [there], they watched every [USA] practice out in [Las] Vegas, the whole staff was out there. They’re on the job, so if I don’t know [my roll on Nets], I’ll know soon.

“But [Lionel Hollins is] a very positive coach. He gave me something after each practice to look at. And then the same with, I met Paul Westphal, Jay Humphries, [John] Welch was out there. It was cool for me because they were doing the… I don’t know what you’d call it, their little coach’s retreat or whatever. I got to talk with them all week.”

Plumlee is going to play a big role for the Nets next season, that’s not in doubt. He averaged 18 minutes a game last season (started 22 games later in the year) and you can expect whether he starts or comes off the bench his minutes will jump to the mid 20s. Also, depending on match ups, he’ll get run at the four and the five.

One other note: because the Nets are deep up front, don’t be shocked when Plumlee’s name starts coming up in trade rumors — teams are going to call about him. The Nets aren’t going to be interested (unless some team comes in way over the top and blows their doors off) but they are going to get calls.

  1. sportsfan18 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:29 PM

    Over Brook? Not at all.

    Over KG? Yes.

    The KG of now isn’t near what he used to be due to Father Time.

    KG only averaged playing 42.7% of each game last season.

    Playing that little, one shouldn’t start.

    The only starter who played fewer min’s that I’m aware of per game was Kendrick Perkins on the Thunder and we all know it’s because he has something bad on Brooks and that’s why he still starts.

    Kendrick only played 19.5 min’s a game or 40.6% of each game.

    NO ONE would say KG wasn’t light years better than Plumlee as a player.

    But, the ancient KG now isn’t the player Plumlee is today.

    KG’s PER last season was 13.3

    Plumlee’s PER last season was 19.0

    Brook then Plumlee then KG (the KG of today that is).

    • money2long - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:25 PM

      Kg should and will start.

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:59 PM

        A PRO sports team is about winning, about performance.

        KG had a great career. He is no longer near the player he used to be.

        One should NOT start simply based on their PAST performance.

        That is wrong. It’s not fair to the fans, to the other players, to ownership etc…

        KG is an all time great and Plumlee will not reach that level. But the Plumlee of today is better than KG and that is SOLELY due to Father Time.

      • money2long - Aug 9, 2014 at 11:25 PM

        I didn’t mention any past performance so shut ur mouth.

      • urodaddy07 - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:18 AM

        No wayKG today is better than Plumlee. Plumlee should start. They will realize that very soon

  2. ljl2 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:30 PM

    He must be a horrible teammate because when Dion Waiters said that he was selfish…

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:40 PM

      If ANYONE other than Dion dares to even touch the basketball, then he says they’re selfish…

    • money2long - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:27 PM

      Well help me out here cuz I truly can’t remember. Did dion say he “should” start vs Plumlee saying he wants to start?

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:18 AM

        Google helps folks who truly can’t remember…

      • money2long - Aug 10, 2014 at 4:29 PM

        So does asking people
        Let me not see you inquire about anything ever again or I’ll roast you.

  3. saint1997 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:34 PM

    He doesn’t know his roll on the Nets, maybe you could ask him his role on the Nets?

  4. mungman69 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:53 PM

    Dion just has to cool his jets or LeBron will NEVER show him the ball.

  5. mungman69 - Aug 9, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    Mason will get a lot of minutes. KG is just about done.

  6. kingperk123 - Aug 9, 2014 at 6:15 PM

    This has Celtics trade all over it

  7. zoomy123 - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:01 PM

    How can anyone seriously argue that KG should start over Plumlee? Did KG magically age backwards 4 years?

    • money2long - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:28 PM

      Don’t let age blind you to kg’s worth on the basketball court. The only ning that should knock Kevin out the starting five is injury.

      • money2long - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:29 PM

        Ning? Auto correct. I want to choke you.

      • zoomy123 - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:39 PM

        In what way is a 38 year old KG a better player than Plumlee?

      • money2long - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:18 AM

        Leadership.
        Defensive direction.
        Focus
        Intensity.
        IQ
        Experience.

        I could keep going. I’m 99% sure Hollins WILL start Kevin Garnett. You guys need to stop seein the game through age and who can jump higher.

  8. marbulz - Aug 9, 2014 at 7:02 PM

    Celtics trade how do you figure I need to know that?!

  9. elcaminobilly - Aug 9, 2014 at 8:24 PM

    Watching Plumlee develop as a player last year was nothing short of incredible. At the start of the season he was not particularly good. He was mostly only on the court so other players could rest. By the end of the year it was a whole different story. He got good and was getting better all the time. If he keeps that up he very well could become one of the best big men in the league. Had he played all year as he did at the end, he probably would have challenged for Rookie of the Year.

    As a Nets fan for almost 20 years I really hope they don’t trade him. Yes, he’s going to be behind Garnett most of this year. But next year I expect Garnett to have retired or gone elsewhere and Lopez and Plumlee to start side by side.

  10. csbanter - Aug 9, 2014 at 8:37 PM

    Plumlee starting over KG is no big deal either way. KG can only play 15-20 minutes. Plumlee is the nets future at PF/C.

    • money2long - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:20 AM

      Exactly. Right on.

  11. irvfin3 - Aug 9, 2014 at 10:22 PM

    I think he should start at the 4. He’s had a nice rookie season and has too much potential to be backing up Lopez. Plus KG is in his 20th season! He’s had a hall of fame career but his days have been behind him now.

    • money2long - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:21 AM

      This is why you’re the fan and not the coach. Continue on with your nba 2k mentality.

  12. bkbell3 - Aug 9, 2014 at 11:54 PM

    First of all “the best offensive center in the league” Al jefferson says ” whatchew talken bout willis” Second i like plumlee but he played one game that ended early with nba players and he had a break out summer? Also kd nor plumlee are a good fit next to lopez because neither can stretch the floor. In his prime kd with his mid-range combined with his defense could work but now? Mirotic if he could rebound a lot and defend would work but i need to see more of him in his second year to decide. Lopez, before he went down was looking better on defense but still needs to rebound more.

    • money2long - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:22 AM

      I’d put cousins over Jefferson if we just talking offense.

      • bkbell3 - Aug 10, 2014 at 1:27 AM

        Yea, boogie is good but jefferson has great footwork and all kinds if pump fakes and is more polished then boogie. He also shoots a higher % then cousins but cousins is getting better every year and is a load but right now on the offensive side i got to go with al for now.

  13. John X - Aug 10, 2014 at 10:55 AM

    KG is probably a main factor in what we all see as Mason Plumlee the player today! KG should start. He sets a tone. Plumlee’s energy coming off the bench will be a boon to the team. Plumlee will be the starter the following year and will get plenty of court time this year. And Lopez is the best offensive Center in the league. He drops 20 with little effort.

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