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Networks reinvest in their process with the extension of Karis LeWert

After brick-and-mortar restoration, which returned a decimated franchise in the postseason, the networks turned to fences this summer and connected, adding free agents superstars Kevin Durant and Kiri Irving to the emerging core. Now, after engaging with veterinarians who are expected to bring Brooklyn to unprecedented heights, the networks are trying to conclude perhaps the most intriguing piece of this young nucleus: swingman Karis Levert.

LeWert celebrated his 25th birthday on Sunday by agreeing. under terms of a new contract extension with the Nets, according to ESPN's Adrian Voinarovsky, which makes Michigan's product the fourth draft member of the 201

6 draft to win a new deal. Ben Simmons and Jamal Murray received a five-year maximum wage increase, while Malcolm Brogdon secured a four-year, $ 85 million pact in signing and trading that sent him from the Bucks to the Pikers. However, the LeVert deal is both shorter and cheaper: a three-year, $ 52.5 million deal that provides security and preserves options for both the player and the team.

In a vacuum, it seems that LeVert may have sold itself short by taking this deal now, rather than waiting to reach a limited free agency in the summer of 2020, when the light free agent of exciting talent could lead to the fact that one or more suitors send him a list of offers for monsters. If the 6-foot-7, 204-pound wing continues the trajectory that made him look like an All-Star early last season and as the Nets' best player in his 76ers loss in the first playoff round, bids could be all the way to the max. But players don't make decisions in vacuums, and the context surrounding LeVert's choice requires that we take into account the history of his injury.

LeVert unleashed the lottery talent in Michigan, winning second-team All-Big Ten selection after his sophomore season. But three separate left foot fracture operations – in May 2014, January 2015 and March 2016 – limited him to 33 games in his last two seasons in Ann Arbor and raised concerns about his long-term healthy entry in June 2016, he will still play all season in three professional campaigns, making 57 appearances as a rookie, 71 as a sophomore and only 40 last season when his rise early in the season led to his fearsome dislocation right foot against the Timberwolves.

LeVert miraculously avoided a fourth surgical procedure, returning before the All-Star break and reaching his pre-injury level in an impressive post-season debut, which averaged 21 points, 4.6 rebounds, and three assists per game in Round 1 against Philadelphia. But a player who received four serious lower leg injuries before the age of 25 knows better than anyone how a false move can change everything. Armed with that knowledge, securing a $ 52.5 million bag seems like a good decision-maker – especially when it still gives LeVert the opportunity to hit unrestricted free agency in the summer of 2023, when he turns 28 and if he is to stay healthy, he will still be in line for a big job to cover the rest of his athletic prime.

For networks, the deal is a delightful game of growing talent that showed signs of being a legitimate perimeter creator. Brooklyn has already been locked in the heart of Durant, Irving, LeVert and DeAnder Jordan for the next three seasons as it looks like it will pop up from the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoffs in the ranks of legal contenders. (Spencer Dinoidy, another key part of Brooklyn's core, is also under contract until 2022, but has a player option for the last year of his deal.) If LeVert peaks at the All-Star, they will have him under contract market price. On the other hand, if he receives another significant injury or nourishment in a more prominent role, his deal should still not be a millstone. (It is worth noting that the real plus-minus and player-plus-minus impact, two metrics aimed at capturing a more complete picture of the player's impact on the court, both marked LeVert as a net negative, even in his season breakthrough.) LeVert's contract Like a three-year, $ 34.4 million extension that Dinwiddie signed last season, it still has to move as a paycheck to a bigger bargain for another high-priced star that could come market in the coming years.

Yes, $ 52.5 million is quite a penny to pay for a person with LeVert's difficult medical history, but networks have already invested a ton in LeVert's growth and development and have already committed to living around the luxury tax line KD-Kyrie window time. Paying early to retain it is the cost of doing business for a team with titular aspirations. The question now is: What is LeVert of this network iteration? And how well would it fit into the perfect version of the Durant and Irving list of the food chain?

In three seasons, LeWert proved that he was the best with the ball in his hands and was able to get to the basket. Only 23 players averaged more drives to the cup last season, according to Second Spectrum tracking data, and 41 percent of his hits last season came 4 feet from the basket, according to Cleaning the Glass . He shot 59 percent of those close-range attempts – an average winger player, but one that could grow as he continued to build strength and develop spices with more reps against tall trees. (Working with deadly goalies such as Durant and Irving every day will probably not hurt.)

Lever doesn't have the size, grip, speed and patience to get to his preferred spots on the floor and find the shots he wants. He scored 0.94 points on insulation possession last season, according to Synergy Sports Technology's gaming charts, 25th out of 51 players to register at least 100 such possessions, and has already achieved using his herkite rhythm kicker to contact the wrong-footed defenders as he attacks, drawing fouls in nearly 12 percent of his shot attempts. Improving his 69 percent free throw percentage would help turn that talent into a viable source of insult to Brooklyn when possessions stagnated.

With more opportunities to facilitate last season, LeVert displayed an advanced touch and feel like a half-court orchestra. He produced 0.93 possession points as a ball-handler and 28 of 81 players who completed at least 200 of those games last season. He did the same with caution: Of the wings that went at least 1,000 minutes last season, only LeVert and DeMar DeRozan gave up assists to more than 22 percent of their teammates' buckets while turning over the ball to less than 12 percent of their offense. property, according to Basketball-Reference.com. There is also a chance for his facilitator to play on a Nets team featuring more bankrupt shooters than last season's model; LeVert has on average nearly twice as many potential assists per game (7.5) compared to real-life assistants (3.9) in 2018-19.

The next turning point of LeVert's development will find ways to produce without the ball in his hands: dribble throws, cuts outside the ball, and running around screens outside the ball, each making up less than 5 percent of LeVert's total offensive diet last season, as he usually acted as the leading keeper in his own minutes or after time – share with Dinwiddie or D&A Angelo Russell. LeWert may not have to undergo a radical change to his previous role this season, with Irving essentially rooting for Russell in the Brooklyn hierarchy, but it would be nice to see signs that he's developing a more well-rounded an offensive game, as he will eventually have to give up some of the spotlight to make more room for Durant's integration.

How convenient LeVert will fit into Brooklyn's new structure will probably depend on his shot. He is a 32.9% 3-point shooter with just under 600 NBA career attempts, shooting just 25.7% from hunting and shooting jumpers and 34% from last season's pull attempts. Sixty-two players registered as many minutes as LeVert and used a large share of their team's offensive possessions in 2018-19; only six posted a lower true shooting rate. Iffy J is not a deal breaker when you are the primary ball handler. A widespread serious crime such as that of Brooklyn moving under Kenny Atkinson can still make a good noise, as long as everyone else on the floor poses a serious threat to overthrow him. It is more difficult to function when you notice trembling shooters while other players perform the main action. LeVert will find himself more likely to take on this role when he shares the word with Irving and Durant, and if he can become dangerous in it, Brooklyn's crime rate will rise significantly. Grounding Durant and Irving meant that the Nets had to sacrifice Russell, the reclamation project they turned into an All-Star, and one of the cultural connections that Atkinson and general manager Sean Marx had built over the past few seasons. However, the extension of LeVert represents a reinvestment in this process. Marx and Atkinson dream big with LeVert, the injured prospects they took out of the first choice, landed through a trade with Thaddeus Young, and then became a player they think could be a future star and a touchstone – and such, which KD and Kyrie reportedly love. Now is the time for LeVert to make those dreams a reality.

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