Nets Will Play in Brooklyn, But None Will Actually Live Here
By Brooklyn Magazine and Brooklyn Magazine
C’mon, Joe Johnson! Move to Brooklyn! Take the subway!
Brooklyn finally has its own professional sports team, the Brooklyn Nets, starting November 1. But it turns out that exactly none of the players who will use Brooklyn for home court advantage will also be using the borough for a home. Apparently the Brooklyn Flea and kayaking excursions down the Gowanus Canal weren’t enough of a draw?
That’s really surprising!
The New York Times reports on this phenomenon and notes that while Deron Williams might be looking down “from towering billboards and slick subway posters” that say “Hello, Brooklyn!” Williams is also forced to say “‘Goodbye, Brooklyn,’…each night, as he drives back to his Manhattan apartment.”
Where, it is implied, he cries into his pillow, cursing the fact that he needs to live in the borough that no one really cares about anymore, staring out his window at the twinkling lights of the Williamsburgh Savings Bank and the minutes ticking by on that red digital clock by the Brooklyn Bridge, minutes that Williams could be spending living it up in Brooklyn, minutes that he instead spends lying, restless, in his Manhattan apartment.
Well, why doesn’t Williams—why don’t ALL the Nets—just move to Brooklyn? This is their main base of operations now, right? Actually, no. Not really. The Times points out that although the Nets play “44 home games, including the preseason” at the Barclays Center, “they could have 75 days of practice” at their training facility in East Rutheford, NJ. So, in the interest of not wanting to spend countless, seemingly interminable hours commuting back and forth from Brooklyn to New Jersey, many players have opted to live in the Jerz or even Manhattan (as a compromise, Manhattan is always a compromise these days.)
Well, that’s a pretty logical rationale for not living in Brooklyn. Commuting around New York City is bad enough, but adding New Jersey into the equation just makes the situation untenable. And, really, this should have no bearing on how Brooklyn feels about the team. After all, how many Yankees live in the Bronx? How many Mets live in Queens? I don’t know! But probably not a ton.
And it helps to know that some Nets, like Jerry Stackhouse and C.J. Watson, wanted to live in Brooklyn, they just didn’t find it practical with their training schedules. Hopefully, when the contract on the Nets’ training facility in East Rutherford ends in two years, the Nets will have built a new practice space in Brooklyn.
Then we can have some new, taller members of the Food Co-op! It’s a win-win situation, you guys!