It's About Winning For Kirilenko in Brooklyn

Updated: July 14, 2013

The NBA world is a buzz right now after hearing that Russian Andrei Kirilenko accepted the Brooklyn Nets mini mid-level of $3 million on a two-year contract with a player option for the second year.

This news seem to send shockwaves through the NBA as Kirilenko made $10 million last year with the Minnesota Timberwolves and opted out of that contract to try and get a better deal. The changes in management of the Timberwolves led to the forward opting out and see what else the league had to offer.

The decision to play for the Nets and reunite with former teammate Deron Williams along with Hall of Famers Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce was just too much to pass up for the 32 year old NBA veteran.

The opportunity to play for a team that can win a championship was trhe deciding factor and hopefully that dream to win it all will come true with Brooklyn.

[quote_simple] Rush’n Hoops

And still, why Brooklyn?

Of course it was an option for quite some time – from the moment Mikhail Prokhorov became the owner. What really influenced my decision now was the trade with Boston. It’s obvious that it has been done in order to make a serious run at winning an NBA title.

How important it is that Prokhorov is the Nets’ owner?Andrie Kirilenko dunks as a Timberwolve

Of course it is one of the main pluses for me. I know him for a long time, going back to the period when I was playing for CSKA before I first moved to the NBA. You can’t say that we are friends. But we have a good relationship and we support each other. It is great that our guy, a Russian, is so interested in basketball. When he became the Nets’ owner it created a platform – thanks to that, NBA scouts are paying closer attention to Russian players now.

A move to Brooklyn for you is also a reunion with Deron Williams who you played with in Utah for a few seasons.

I talked to him on Thursday and he was persuading me to join the Nets. Williams is one of the best point guards in the NBA, and now he has to organize a team which is stacked at every position. This is no joke when a single team has seven or eight players who know how to play quality basketball.

From the moment your agreement with Brooklyn became known, it fueled gossip. First, the fans on the internet commented that Kirilenko had agreed to take a pay cut because Prokhorov would make up for it in Russia. And then a few NBA general managers voiced their unhappiness and asked the league’s office to start an investigation regarding possible under-the-table deal between Russian player and owner. What would you say about these accusations?

Just one thing: it is laughable. It is strictly forbidden by the NBA rules, and the league’s office keeps the situation under great control. It is silly not just to talk about it – even to think of it. Masha and I have argued what is better: to go after more money or play where you want and to try and reach a serious goal. In my career, I have made a decent sum of money. Indecent even. (Laughs). And to not use a chance that the Nets provide would not be right. The times when I could have a desire to make as much as possible have passed. By the way, our family debates were quire serious. But after weighing on everything it became clear: the sum of the factors made Brooklyn a clear winner.[/quote_simple]

H/T @netsdaily

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