New Net Norvel Pelle expected to join team in Washington

The Nets expect newly signed Norvel Pelle to join them in Washington before Sunday’s game against the last-place Wizards.

But with two roster spots still open — and one of them having to be filled by Saturday — coach Steve Nash said he expects the additions aren’t done.

While the path of least resistance would simply be to promote either of their two-way players — Chris Chiozza or Reggie Perry — onto standard deals, Nash admitted they probably will eschew that option.

“I guess it’s possible to sign one of our two-way guys,” Nash said before Friday’s rout of the Thunder. “But I think we’re probably looking to sign somebody on a free agent deal here.”

Though Nash tried to manage expectations — Pelle hasn’t played since last year’s playoffs with the 76ers — there is opportunity for him.

“A lot of that, when you sign a guy midway through the year, hasn’t been playing, is his fitness levels, ability to adapt quickly to the game,” Nash cautioned. “But as far as his profile, he’s a rim-protecting center who can block shots, and a lob threat in and behind the defense.

New Net Norvelle Pelle, blocking a shot as a member of the 76ers last season, is expected to join the team in Washington.
New Net Norvel Pelle, blocking a shot as a member of the 76ers last season, is expected to join the team in Washington.
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“We’ll see as we go here how physically he’s able to adapt to playing in the NBA again after a little layoff and we can get him up to speed and see if he gets an opportunity.”

The struggling Perry picked a good time to notch his first double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The Nets sat Kevin Durant for Friday’s win over the Thunder with what was termed injury recovery.

“Just a collective decision,” Nash said. “He’s played a lot of minutes. Played an overtime game, and it was a decision to protect him.”

Landry Shamet (3 of 7 from deep) and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (4 of 8) finally broke out from outside.

“I was happy for Landry,” Nash said. “Obviously he’s a very good shooter. He hasn’t had a good start shooting the ball, but he’s done his job whenever we’ve played him. He’s been good defensively and taken shots and just hasn’t had them go in yet.

“So he got a little rhythm going which is great to see. TLC as well has done a great job defensively for us.”

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