The Brooklyn Nets are shocking the NBA this season and D’Angelo Russell, Spencer Dinwiddie, and Joe Harris have a lot to do with it.
According to NBA players polled by Sam Amick of The Athletic, D’Angelo Russell, Spencer Dinwiddie, and Joe Harris are some of the most underrated players in the league.
All three Brooklyn Nets received votes with Russell receiving the most at 3.4 percent while Harris and Dinwiddie each took home 1.7 percent of the vote. If nothing else, this signifies that players around the league are taking notice of what’s going on in Brooklyn.
The Nets clinched their first playoff berth since the 2014-15 season. Furthermore, the four-year playoff drought should have been much longer given what general manager Sean Marks inherited.
Marks and head coach Kenny Atkinson have completed the turnaround by getting players to buy into the system. There are no better examples of that then Russell, Dinwiddie, and Harris.
Russell’s redemption story after Los Angeles is well documented. The Lakers never expected D-Lo to develop into a leader and an All-Star. Brooklyn’s talent incubator has worked wonders for Russell.
Dinwiddie was cast off by the Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls. But he’s found a home in Brooklyn as the leader on a dangerous second unit. He finished third in Most Improved Player voting in 2018-19 and will likely secure some votes in the Sixth Man of the Year award this season.
Harris was a castoff of the Cleveland Cavaliers and didn’t quite fit with their plans for the future. But given the time to develop in Brooklyn, he’s become one of the most feared three-point shooters in the league. In fact, he leads the league shooting 47.4 percent from deep.
Of course, player polls are meaningless in the grand scheme of things, but this recognition stems directly from the culture instilled by Marks and Atkinson. The Brooklyn brain trust gave Russell, Dinwiddie, and Harris the right atmosphere and opportunity to flourish.