The Nets’ Problems Are Bigger Than Steve Nash

The Nets dumped their coach, but the team has never lived up to expectations. And there’s no clear path forward now.

For the past three seasons, success for the Nets had been rooted in hypotheticals.

Ever since the all-stars Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant joined the team in the summer of 2019, the Nets had been supremely talented on paper, a team with hopes of multiple N.B.A. championships.

On the court, though, they were never good enough to contend. Their specialty, it seemed, was not playoff wins but off-court theater.

Two weeks into a new season, one that was supposed to be a fresh start, the Nets are once again mired in drama. 

Four days ago, Irving posted a link to an antisemitic documentary on his Twitter account, drawing a public rebuke from the team’s owner, Joe Tsai.

On Tuesday, the Nets announced that their coach, Steve Nash, was out. Hours later, General Manager Sean Marks sat down behind a microphone and tried to quiet the gathering storms.

Marks expressed regret about having to fire Nash, but said now that it was done, he would “like to get back to basketball,” to “focus on the things that are important.”