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Thursday, February 20, 2014
Starting Five: Deadline dealing?

By Mike Mazzeo

So here we are, mere hours from Thursday’s 3 p.m. ET trade deadline.

The Brooklyn Nets have already acquired Marcus Thornton, and were working to acquire Jordan Hill ... then again, so were other teams.

As anyone who has watched this team all season can see -- and Wednesday night’s game in Utah was just the latest example -- the Nets desperately need rebounding help.

They are second-to-last in the category.

This is why Hill would help. And if not him, someone like him.

Someone athletic, someone that can rebound, play post defense and score inside occasionally.

This is the type of player the Nets covet. And money doesn’t appear to matter.

The Nets, after all, are willing to pay around $17 million in additional luxury-tax penalties just to bring in Hill.

There’s no question Nets GM Billy King is going to be actively working the phones in an effort to improve his team and get the rebounding help it desires.

Of course, even if they don’t do anything Thursday, the Nets will still have until March 10 to use their $5.25 million Disabled Player Exception. And they also have two open roster spots.

Question: What would you like to see King do by Thursday’s deadline?

In case you missed it: We’ve got details on the Thornton trade and a recap of Wednesday night’s win over the Jazz.

Standings update: The Nets (25-27) are tied for fifth place in the Eastern Conference with the Washington Wizards (26-28). The two teams have identical .481 winning percentages.

Up next: The Nets don’t play again until Saturday night against the Golden State Warriors.