“When I first got drafted there, we already had Nerlens (Noel) there, Joel (Embiid) was there, so we’re trying to have three starting centers on the same team,” Okafor said Monday at his introductory news conference.
“It just never really was the right fit.”
Although there was a logjam blocking Okafor in Philly, he is expected to be heavily involved with the Nets moving forward.
Okafor also has to address his off the court issues that have generate some bad press for the young forward including a speeding ticket for driving 108 miles per hour and was suspended two games by the Sixers for an altercation outside of a Boston nightclub with a heckler.
“Speeding obviously is illegal,” Okafor said. “I know that’s not what you’re supposed to do. I guess you just learn how the page can turn on you and how everything can flip. I can’t really say I learned anything, because you know going in that’s not right. You just learn from your mistakes, but (it was) a tough thing that I went through, I got past, and I’m looking to better times now.”
Okafor is looking forward to playing alongside Nets’ guard D’Angelo Russell. Russell, like Okafor, had some issues with his former team, in Russell’s case, the Los Angeles Lakers.
“We’re just very excited to get on the court together,” Okafor said. “You never would’ve thought the number two and number three picks would be playing on the same team a few years after, but like I said, everything happens for a reason and I’m really excited.”
“I feel like we’re similar in that we have a lot to prove,” Okafor said. “I know he’s working his (butt) off as well. Right now he’s rehabbing, trying to get back on the court. I think we both have a chip on our shoulder and we have a lot to prove. We’re definitely similar in that regard.”
Okafor knows that there is a lot of work ahead but is eager to get things rolling in Brooklyn.
“I’m not a perfect player,” Okafor said. “I’m 21. There are things that I need to work on, that I have worked on and that I’ll continue to work on.”
“I feel really motivated right now, but I’ve always been motivated,” Okafor said. “This is the first time where people are against me in a sense because I’ve always been the hyped-up guy. It’s something new for me to experience, so I’m glad that I am experiencing it.”
Chris Fleming Joining Bulls’ Staff
Fleming joined the Nets staff back in 2016 when head coach Kenny Atkinson took the helm.
Fleming also served as an assistant with the Denver Nuggets back in the 2015-2016 season.
D’Angelo Russell Wants to Stay with Nets
Brooklyn Nets point guard D’Angelo Russell “definitely” wants to remain with the Nets for the long term.
Russell said that he definitely wants to stay with the Nets and remain in Brooklyn, according to Nets Daily’s Anthony Puccio.
Russell, 23, established himself as a rising point guard star this past season with a breakout campaign posting 21.2 points, 7.0 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game for the Nets in the 2018-2019 season.
Nets Add Theo Pinson To 15-Man Roster
According to The Athletic’s Michael Scotto, the Nets converted Pinson’s two-way contract to a standard NBA contract, and is now eligible to participate in the playoffs.
Pinson has had a solid season in the G League as a member of the Long Island Nets and was named to the All-NBAGL Second Team last week.
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