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  • Writer's pictureErik Slater

Nets acquire Jahlil Okafor, Nik Stauskas, 2nd-round pick from 76ers for Trevor Booker

The Brooklyn Nets have acquired Jahlil Okafor, Nik Stauskas and a 2nd-round pick from the Philadelphia 76ers for Trevor Booker.

Okafor was the third pick of the 2015 draft and averaged 17.5 PPG in his rookie season. However, the 21-year-old center has seen his role diminish with Joel Embiid's emergence as a star in the Philadelphia frontcourt. Okafor has been seen as a defensive liability and his effort has been questioned throughout his tenure with the 76ers.

However, Okafor has shown flashes of elite scoring ability from the low post which is something the Nets desperately need.

Stauskas was the eighth pick of the 2014 draft. The Michigan product averaged 9.5 PPG last season for Philadelphia. Stauskas can shoot from three and has displayed potential to create his own shot off the dribble.

However, minutes will be tough to come by for the fourth-year shooting guard. Brooklyn is frontloaded with guards, but Kenny Atkinson will likely make room to see what he has in Stauskas.

This trade is a win-win for both sides. Brooklyn gets a talented young player with tremendous upside in Okafor and a big guard who can shoot in Stauskas. Brooklyn's player development team has done wonders with Spencer Dinwiddie and Joe Harris. Sean Marks has given them two more young pieces to work with. A second-round pick is also a nice sweetener.

It is somewhat amazing that the Nets now have the second and third picks of the 2015 draft, D'Angelo Russell and Okafor. Both were selected just before Kristaps Porzingis of the Knicks.

In Booker, Philadelphia adds a gritty, much needed veteran presence to a young roster. Booker will add energy and make invaluable hustle plays that often provide the difference between winning and losing.

Age was undoubtedly a huge factor in this decision for Brooklyn. Okafor is just 21 and Stauskas is 24 while Booker is 30. The Nets continue to attempt to assemble as many young, talented pieces as possible in hopes of developing a playoff caliber team.

Sean Marks cannot lose in this trade. If Okafor or Stauskas pans out the Nets are extremely happy. If they do not fit into Atkinson's system, Marks gave up a 30-year-old power forward who will most likely be on the decline shortly.

Sean Marks was dealt a horrible hand by the previous Nets brass, but he continues to make something out of nothing. Brooklyn now has a promising core of young players and a fan base with something to cheer about.

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