The Brooklyn Nets have made a significant addition to their roster by signing free agent forward Darius Bazley to a one-year contract. Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul and agent Brandon Cavanaugh confirmed the news, stating that Bazley will have the opportunity to contribute to the Nets’ frontcourt rotation after starting 118 games in his first three seasons with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Bazley’s journey to the Nets began when he was traded to the Phoenix Suns during the February trade deadline. He played seven regular-season games with the Suns before becoming a free agent. The Suns acquired Bazley in exchange for Dario Saric and a 2029 second-round pick.
Selected as the 23rd overall pick in the 2019 NBA draft, Bazley showcased his potential during the 2020-2021 season, averaging a career-best 13.7 points and 7.2 rebounds in 55 games. Throughout his four NBA seasons, Bazley has averaged 9.1 points and 5.3 rebounds, displaying his versatility and athleticism on the court.
Before entering the NBA, Bazley initially committed to Syracuse out of high school but decided to forego college and train for the 2019 NBA draft. He gained attention for his unique internship partnership with New Balance, his shoe endorser, further showcasing his entrepreneurial mindset off the court.
The addition of Darius Bazley adds depth to the Nets’ roster, along with the acquisitions of small forward Lonnie Walker IV and guard Dennis Smith Jr. in free agency. With Bazley’s youth and athleticism, the Nets hope to maximize his potential and contribute to their championship aspirations.
Bazley’s time with the Phoenix Suns was short-lived, and his role did not align with the team’s needs. Despite the belief among some fans that his athleticism alone warranted more playing time, his statistics with the Suns were not remarkable. In seven games, he averaged 4 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 0.9 assists.
Now, with the Brooklyn Nets, Bazley has another opportunity to prove himself and compete for significant minutes. Known for his explosiveness and ability to make highlight plays, Bazley’s fit with the Nets offers him a chance to continue his development surrounded by a talented roster. His size and athleticism make him a formidable presence around the basket, and the Nets’ focus on rebounding will greatly benefit from his skills.
The Nets have completed their roster with the signing of Darius Bazley, filling all 15 standard roster spots. However, there may be another opening soon if they decide not to guarantee Edmond Sumner’s contract. The Nets are committed to addressing their weaknesses, particularly their rebounding deficiencies, and hope that the addition of Bazley will contribute to their success in the upcoming season.