Jordan Farmar—currently the only Jewish NBA player who is not the Sacramento Kings’ Israeli forward Omri Casspi—signed a three-year, $12 million contract with the New Jersey Nets. This is exciting for several reasons:
• It brings him to the Tristate Area (Jewish Heritage Night every night!);
• The Nets were, literally, the league’s worst team last season, which means Farmar will get much more playing time than he did on the Los Angeles Lakers, which were, literally, the league’s best team last season;
• Next season is the first season that the Nets will not be playing in the inconvenient Meadowlands, but instead at the much-more-accessible stadium in downtown Newark;
• If things go according to plan, the Nets will be playing in a brand-new Brooklyn stadium while Farmar is still under contract;
Meanwhile, undrafted Duke graduate Jon Scheyer has signed on to play summer ball with … the Miami Heat. Yes, that Miami Heat.
Playing summer ball isn’t even close to making the team. But here’s the thing: Because the Heat are spending so much money on their three superstars, the salary cap will compel them to fill in the rest of their positions with players who won’t demand more than the league minimum. In other words, Scheyer has a much better shot at playing for the Heat than for some team that hadn’t just committed well over $300 million to three guys.
So the versatile Scheyer, who will probably play some amalgam of shooting guard and small forward, could be backing up … Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. Of course, in that case, we will be obliged to root against him. Then again, given that he played for Duke, we should be used to that by now.
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.