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MarShon Brooks Reportedly Nearing Deal with Olimpia Milano: Analysis

MarShon Brooks, a three-year NBA veteran who last played for the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2013-14 season, is closing in on signing a contract with Olimpia Milano of the Basket League A Series, according to Shams Charania of RealGM.

Since entering the league as the 25th overall pick in the 1st round of the 2011 NBA Draft, Brooks has bounced around playing for four teams in just three seasons. The Indiana Pacers have recently shown interest in Brooks to bolster their depth on the wing, which makes sense given that Paul George is set to miss the entire 2014-15 season.

Of course, Brooks is a far cry from George. He has yet to develop into the prolific scorer the Nets thought he would become when they executed a draft-night trade to nab him, and inefficiency has followed him at every stop. He’s a streaky shooter that can get hot but not enough for a team to justify giving him major minutes. He showed great promise his rookie season, averaging 12.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.2 assists per game for the then New Jersey Nets, which was good enough to net him a spot on the All-Rookie Second Team. Despite filling up the stat sheet in the basic categories, the advanced statistics tell a different, more meaningful story. His true shooting percentage was a meager 50.2% and his PER was well below league average at 12.9.

Couple Brooks’ ability to create his own offense with great length and athleticism, and it’s easy to wonder why he hasn’t been able to do more with his opportunities in the NBA. Part of that likely has to do with lacking a defined role. He has never consistently been part of a rotation for any team he’s been on. He’s a guy that needs a lot of minutes and a larger role to fill up the stats sheet, and that’s something that NBA teams aren’t willing to give to a guy that is so inefficient. It’s Brooks’ onus to adapt to play a lesser role than he did in college, and that is something he hasn’t been able to do in the Association.

Despite receiving NBA interest, it’s unlikely an NBA team would pay him the amount of money that Olimpia Milano would, and he certainly wouldn’t have as large of a role as he would overseas. Nothing is set in stone yet, but after facing so much uncertainty early in his NBA career, Brooks seems keen to settle in both financially and on the court. His best opportunity to do both might lie overseas.

Andrew Ford