Friday, March 9, 2012
Okur still out indefinitely
By Mike Mazzeo
Nets center Mehmet Okur remains out indefinitely, coach Avery Johnson told reporters in Charlotte on Friday.
Okur has missed 23 games this season due to lingering lower back problems, and has not played since Jan. 25.
The 32-year-old, who was acquired in a trade with Utah and center Brook Lopez went down with a broken foot, is in the final year of his contract and will make $10.9 million.
When Okur was able to play, he shot just 37.4 percent from the field and 31.9 percent from 3-point range.
• The Nets are 5 1/2 games back of the Knicks for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, and 2 1/2 games back of the ninth-place Bucks. New York will take on the Bucks in Milwaukee on Friday night.
If the injury-depleted Nets are going to make a push, the time is now. Of their remaining 14 games in March, just five are against teams with winning records and only six are on the road.
The Nets have four games before the March 15 trade deadline: at 5-32 Charlotte Friday night, vs. 21-19 Houston on Saturday night; vs. 15-24 Milwaukee on Monday night; and vs. 13-26 Toronto on Wednesday night.
It’s a longshot for sure, but given that the Knicks play the toughest schedule in the NBA the rest of the way, you never know.