It's kind of a nightmare to be a Brooklyn Nets fan nowadays, as they are getting plenty of hate left and right. NBA analyst Jay Williams even went as far as to say that the current Nets are "probably the most unlikable team" in history. And it's hard not to argue with that assertion.
"The Nets are the black eye of the NBA," Williams said on a recent episode of his show on ESPN. "They are probably the most unlikable team, maybe in all sports, you could say, in the history of the NBA."
What's to like?
Unless you're a diehard fan of the Nets or their players, it isn't easy to continue rooting for the franchise. How could you when Brooklyn has some of the most polarizing players in the league?
To add fuel to the fire, Kyrie Irving recently buried himself in controversy by promoting a film filled with antisemitic tropes and initially refused to apologize. Even some of the funniest guys on TV, Reggie Miller, Charles Barkley, and Shaquille O'Neal, appear angered by Irving's antics.
The front office hasn't exactly done an admirable job, either. It recently let go of Steve Nash. But some people around the league feel that the 48-year-old coach was just a scapegoat for the Nets' troubles these recent seasons. Then there are reports that they are hiring Ime Udoka, who is serving a one-year suspension for violation of team policies, when there are other candidates who might have been better - or safer - alternatives.
Can the Nets move past the hate?
The question now is if the Nets can move past the issues they are facing and get on the people's good side. Interestingly, the organization is reportedly looking for a public relations coordinator.
Maybe winning the title this season can help Brooklyn move up the likability scale. At 2-6 to start the 2022-23 campaign and the presence of strong Eastern Conference contenders, the prospect of even advancing to the Finals is daunting for the team. But there is still plenty of time to turn things around. All that needs to happen is their two superstars have to completely change their character.