This is the 12th installment of our daily Nets player-by-player breakdown, with an emphasis on what’s to come for next season.
JASON COLLINS, CENTER
Year in review: Collins’ return to the Nets organization made history as he became the first openly gay athlete in North America's four recognized major team sports. Collins was brought on to provide depth at center and help with defense and rebounding if needed.
He played in 22 games after joining the Nets in late February. He averaged 7.8 minutes and made one start. Off the court, Collins is a role model, his jersey was a best-seller upon his signing and his historic signing could have an impact in years to come.
Role moving forward: Collins, 35, said he will decide his future this summer and whether he wants to keep playing. If he returns to the Nets, his role will be the same as a backup big man who will provide depth and all the little things that do not show up in a box score such as screening to free up scorers and blocking out opponents to help a teammate grab a rebound.
Contract status: Collins is a free agent.
What they’re saying:
“It was the right thing to do,” Jason Kidd said of signing his former teammate Collins. “It’s about basketball, it’s about his makeup of what he brings to the table as a person. A great guy in the locker room, toughness understanding how to play the game, being able to help so many guys.”
Should they bring him back: The Nets face uncertainty this offseason with their big men. Kevin Garnett has to decide whether to keep playing. Brook Lopez is returning from surgery on his foot and likely will be on a minutes limit. Andray Blatche could opt out of his contract. The Nets will likely need a big man for insurance. Collins is a true professional. If he decides to keep playing and the Nets have space on their roster, Collins could be back for a full season.