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Nets not buying out DeAndre Jordan even as role diminishes

Nets not buying out DeAndre Jordan even as role diminishes

DeAndre Jordan appears to have been knocked out of the Nets’ rotation by a pair of big men plucked off the buyout market. But sources have told The Post the Nets have no intention of adding the veteran center to that buyout market.

“It’s never been discussed,” said a source.

The deadline for players waived or bought out to be eligible for the playoffs is 11:59 p.m. Friday. With Jordan having not played in any of the last four games — and having gone a dozen straight without appearing in the fourth quarter — there have been rumors that he and the Nets could look at a buyout. But multiple sources said there have been no conversations on the matter.

“Nothing going on there,” another league told The Post.

The Nets won a muted buyout market by signing Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge, and they’ve supplanted Jordan in the rotation. He’d arrived with pals Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, while Kenny Atkinson’s insistence on playing him behind Jarrett Allen is believed to have hastened the coach’s ouster.

Nets
DeAndre Jordan
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But these are different times in Brooklyn.

The Nets went all-in for a title chase in trading Allen as part of the package for James Harden. Jordan was up and down when he had the center spot to himself by default, and the team added first Griffin and then Aldridge.

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Nic Claxton’s return from injury on Feb. 23 and the impressive Alize Johnson have given them young depth and flipped a weakness to a strength — and taken a huge cut out of Jordan’s playing time.

Griffin has looked particularly spry. He held Zion Williamson to 16 points on 4 of 12 shooting, snapping the Pelicans star’s run of 25 straight games topping 20 points. More notably, he has five dunks in his seven games, after having just five in his last 49 tilts with Detroit. He hadn’t dunked since December 2019 before coming to the Nets and seeming rejuvenated.

“From top to bottom this organization does an unbelievable job of taking care of their guys and thinking of everything,” said Griffin, adding it’s affected him positively. “Just being able to come here and take a couple of weeks and get with the performance staff and work on the things they wanted me to work on was huge.”

Johnson has played five games for the Nets, averaging 8.6 points and 6.6 rebounds on 65.6 percent shooting in 15 minutes. His second 10-day contract expires Saturday, and they can’t ink him to a third. They could give him part of their taxpayer mid-level exception, signing him for the rest of the season or even to a three-year deal.

“[Jordan’s] got to stay ready. Who knows when it might be? It might be Sunday. It might be in two weeks. But everyone’s got to continue to prepare and stay ready and see what happens,” coach Steve Nash said. “We’ve got a lot of centers. We’re going to work through it and see what our rotation is going to be come playoff time.”

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About the author

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Donald Langer

Donald is a sports enthusiast who loves indulging in occasional cricket and football matches. He is a passionate journalist who flaunts a perfect hold over the English language. He currently caters his skills for the sports section of The Madison Leader Gazette.

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