Michael Scotto: Jahlil Okafor was asked if playing time, winning, contract or style of play would factor most into his free agency decision this summer. Here is Okafor’s full reply:
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And while Okafor has professed to be happy with the Nets, how will he weigh court time, money, playing style, an opportunity to win and other factors in where he signs? “All that goes into it,” said Okafor, who did not play in Sunday’s 108-96 loss to the Pistons. “But honestly I have no experience with this whatsoever, so I’m just trying to finish the season strong. [I’ll have] guidance from people who’ve dealt with what I’m going to deal with, and lean on them. I really don’t know what to expect. But, at the end of the day, I want to play basketball.”
“He’s had a little window of opportunity. We haven’t given him a great opportunity, a great section of play where you say, ‘Man, here’s 30, 40 games.’ That’s part circumstances,” Atkinson said. “You’d have more information if he had a training camp and he had a longer time period, he’d be much more acclimated.”
“I don’t really know what that means. I’ve been here for three or four months,” Okafor said. “Saying a full offseason would help me, I’ve been with these guys for three or four months now, done everything they’ve asked of me. I’m not sure what they want. But everybody’s treated me really well.”
But with Okafor a free agent, will he be with the Nets this summer? It’s unclear how he’ll weigh contract, system, being dropped from the rotation and other factors, because the Nets refused to make him available. “We’re not in that decision-making process right now,” Atkinson said. “We haven’t made any decisions. [But] I love his spirit, love how he’s working.”
Okafor has professed his love for Brooklyn and it may just take a summer to work everything out. It’s unlikely the Nets will have much competition for him, which is good because under the terms of the CBA, they can only pay him $6.2 million over one year. Everyone’s protected in that way and so we’ll have to wait and see how the rest of the season and free agency works out.
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May 27, 2018 | 11:15 pm EDT Update
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