Jakob Poeltl Linked As NBA Trade Deadline Target For Nets

Jakob Poeltl, San Antonio Spurs, Brooklyn Nets, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

The primary objective for the Brooklyn Nets is clear—win the 2022 NBA Finals with Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving all at the helm. The future is uncertain and it’s rare for superstar trios to last for the long-haul, so there’s no time like the present to pursue a title.

It has been an up-and-down season for the Nets and they currently are in a downward trend with Kevin Durant sidelined, only having Kyrie Irving as a part-time player, and Joe Harris continuing to have no timetable for his return to the lineup. It’s often been James Harden with mostly non-shooting threats as the supporting cast.

The options are limited for the Brooklyn Nets to make an upgrade at the NBA trade deadline. The team could use more shooting in the supporting cast as well as a clear-cut starting caliber center. Using their $11.5 million trade exception, there will be options at their disposal.

When identifying the top three trade deadline targets for each team around the NBA, Bleacher Report’s Greg Swartz labeled San Antonio Spurs center Jakob Poeltl as a ‘dream target’ for the Brooklyn Nets. Poeltl is averaging 13.2 points (61.3% FG), 9.1 rebounds, and 2.8 assists in 29.1 minutes per game.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Nets-Spurs Trade Gives Brooklyn A Defensive Anchor In Jakob Poeltl

“Poeltl ($8.7 million) fits into Brooklyn’s $11.5 million trade exception if it doesn’t want to send matching salary back to San Antonio, and he is one of the most underrated defenders in the game. The 26-year-old has become an excellent rim protector and rebounder, and his 13.8 contested shots per game lead the NBA.” Swartz wrote.

Using a trade exception is certainly a legal practice for the Brooklyn Nets that can be a helpful vessel to add a key talent without having to send out a big salary in a deal. However, the team will need to be prepared to spend big on luxury tax payments even more than they already are if that’s the route they opt to pursue.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Nets-Spurs Trade Gives Brooklyn A Defensive Anchor In Jakob Poeltl

It would be worthwhile to swing a deal with the San Antonio Spurs to land Jakob Poeltl. He’s a savvy defender with some of the best use of angles and positioning for a center and would anchor the Nets’ half-court defense. He’s aggressive on the boards and is a highly efficient interior play-finisher for an offense, too. Alongside a trio of superstars, he’d thrive.

What the Brooklyn Nets would have to send to the San Antonio Spurs to get a deal done is not an easy scenario to navigate. They would likely need to leverage the expiring deal of Nic Claxton as a focus and see if a name like Bruce Brown or Jevon Carter can be of interest. Sending out a 2028 first-round pick wouldn’t hurt, either.