In 1973, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band released the album “Greetings From Asbury Park” and the nine people who bought the album heard the promise of a future Dylan in those songs. And by “future Dylan,” I mean the one that recorded the largely ignored “World Gone Wrong” in the early 90s. Both were wordy, folksy, singy, songwritery mop-top winning acclaim for songs to which no one was actually listening. Ten months later, Springsteen released “The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle” and the heir-apparent to Dylan looked a little different, a little brasher, more confident, less clumsy. There was the promise of bigger things to come. Not yet, but soon. Two years later Columbia Records released “Born To Run” and the rest was history. Unless you’re a Rush fan, in which case you have no idea what I’m talking about. In that case, turn off “2112″ for a minute and follow me Eastward, where another young Jerseyan is also working toward something bigger.
I’m speaking, of course, of Yi Jianlian: starting power forward for the Nets … For real? He was traded? Well, why wasn’t I notified? Cripes. Okay. Uh, lemme check my notes here. I’ll just have to rewrite a few things … Hold on a sec …
… I’m speaking, of course, of Derrick Favors: starting power forward for the Nets. At least it appears that he’ll be starting. I can’t imagine Sean Williams‘ 11 minutes per game last year were enough to compel the Nets to start him and every other PF from last year is off the team. Then again, this is the summer in which 178 NBA agents are free and it seems like half of them were all-stars last year, so this ain’t a promise that Favors will be the man come Opening Day. Today though, he’s the man full of promise on this young and undefined Nets team.
But remember that Springsteen stuff? From, like, three paragraphs ago? It’s five inches above this sentence. It’s weird that you don’t remember it. Scroll back up, review and come on back. Got it? Okay. Favors won’t do much for you this season as the Nets will be working on their “Greetings From Asbury Park” in 2010-11. It’ll be solid. Manfred Mann will resurrect his career on a few of the singles, but the real stuff won’t happen ’til ’13. Give this kid two more seasons, let the comparisons to Dylan die down, maybe Favors will tighten up his musical storytelling a bit and the Nets will be a-rockin’.
The bad news is that Favors is teeny and will probably get pushed around. The good news is that he’ll likely be given all the minutes he can handle this season to figure out how not to get pushed around so much in 2011-12. The sequel to the first bad news is that him figuring things out will result in some messy fantasy lines this season. Messy enough that you might want to lose Favors in the flood of other more promising rookies come draft day. So “For You,” here’s what to expect from Favors while he spends the season “Growin’ Up”: 25.5 mpg / .550 / .645 / 0.0 3pt / 10.0 pts / 6.5 rbd / 0.7 ast / 0.5 spg / 1.5 bpg / 1.8 tov
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