Nets end 35-year run in New Jersey, head to Brooklyn
A fan holds up a sign bidding farewell to the New Jersey Nets at the Prudential Center in Newark on Monday night.
April 24th, 2012
11:46 AM ET

Nets end 35-year run in New Jersey, head to Brooklyn

When the New Jersey Nets game ended Monday night, Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" blared over the loudspeakers at the Prudential Center in Newark.

When the Nets play their next home game, expect "Brooklyn (Go Hard)" - from Nets co-owner Jay-Z - to be the song of choice.

That's because the NBA team ended their 35-year run in New Jersey on Monday night with a 105-87 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. Come fall, the team will become the Brooklyn Nets and play their games in the brand-new Barclays Center in the New York borough.

The Nets have one more game to play representing New Jersey - Thursday night against the Raptors in Toronto - before this season ends, but Tuesday morning, even the team's website was looking ahead to the 2012-13 season, displaying a blank logo on a black background with the Twitter hashtag "hellobrooklyn."

A sell-out crowd watched Monday night's loss to the 'Sixers, but New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie wasn't there to give the franchise a nice sendoff.

“You don’t want to stay, we don’t want you,” he said at press conference earlier Monday.  “I’m not going to be in the business of begging people to stay here.

"Good riddance! See you later," Christie wished the Nets.

Others seemed to have moved on, too.

The sports front page of nj.com, the website of the Newark Star-Ledger, put the story of the Nets final home game in the city, in the 10th position, below even two items on the New York Knicks. The story was eight paragraphs long.

The mood was a bit better among the 18,711 patrons in the Prudential Center Monday night. The team brought back some its biggest stars, including Derrick Coleman, Kenny Anderson, Albert King and Kendall Gill, for the game. Current Dallas Mavericks guard Jason Kidd, regarded as the best player in the Nets' history, recorded a message.

“Being a Net was a great time of my career,” Kidd said, according to a report in The Record of Bergen County. “And a great honor.”

Fans gave loud cheers when highlights of the team's two runs to the NBA Finals were shown, according to an ESPNNewYork.com report. But those finals runs ended in losses, just like more than 1,600 other games in the Nets record books.

And shortly after the cheers of "Let's go Nets" faded into silence Monday night, the Nets were indeed gone.

“Knowing that (the franchise) is not going to be here anymore, it’s definitely a sad day,” Coleman told The Record. “Just for the people here in the state of New Jersey. … it’s never going to be the same because it’s not here in Jersey.”

Star Ledger writer Dave D'Allesandro, penned the New Jersey Nets obit at the top of his column Tuesday morning.

"Pro basketball died here tonight after a long and excruciating illness. For much of its 35 years in New Jersey, it was an athletic institution paralyzed by trauma, triggered by a chronic gaucherie with spasmodic bouts of semi-competence.

"It is mourned by a few thousand fans who cared enough to notice the Nets for 41 nights a year, a few thousand others who liked the idea of good seats at discounted prices, a handful of newspaper guys now sentenced to watching that insufferable college game, and a mayor still holding out for a share of the parking revenue.

"The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to the Nets Center for Disease Control in support of those who suffer from the same masochistic devotion to blowouts and monumental failure."

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Filed under: Basketball • NBA • New Jersey • Sports
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. JohnnyInSNJ

    CHRISTIE knows nothing about business. You need to court big business and get them to come to NJ...not just expect them to show up and open their wallets.

    That's why we have no industry in NJ below Newark
    That's why NJ's only basketball team just left.
    That's why the new NY-NJ tunnel was canceled...

    Christie is intentionally running NJ's pride into the ground.

    April 24, 2012 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ex Jersey Fish

      New Jersey's 'Pride"? being run into the ground? Never heard NJ and Pride ever used in the same sentence together.

      April 24, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Rainbows and lollipops… Oh, hi everybody! I don’t have anything relevant to contribute. Just wanted to waste CNN blogosphere space with predictable leftist rhetoric. I’m the clown in charge of the confirmation bias we 80 IQ dimocrats that inhabit this blog prance about in! Rainbows and lollipops…

      April 26, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  2. The Decline

    The Nets did next to nothing for NJ, then sold the team to a Russian billionaire who couldnt waite to move the team to NY....why wouldnt Christie say what he said? I would have. The whole thing is a complete joke, just like the team and the owners. Do they honestly think ppl will take the Nets over the Knicks in NY?!?!?! This whole venture is destined to fail. Good luck with Farmar as your lead point lol

    April 24, 2012 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steevo

      The point is, since you obviously don't grasp it, there is a way for a governor to act that would have been much more professional about this than the way Christie behaved. He has no class. Is he still flying the NJ flag at half-mast for Whitney Houston. C'mon man–that's a slap in the face to every military family in America.

      April 24, 2012 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  3. K3Citizen

    So this is the GOP plan to fix America? Throw out money making industries? I can see why people would want to get out of Jersey. They have an obese pig governing them and a girl named snookie spreading her diseases around.

    April 24, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Yuri

    Corpulent Christie's carping tongue goes berserk. Again. This guy's hubris is even huger than his torso. The fatso needs to face some hard facts of life. Yet, he ain't gonna change even if the pigs fly.

    April 24, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  5. banasy©

    You get what you pay for.

    Christie is *such* a class act.

    April 24, 2012 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Boneman

    No matter where they play, NJ or NY, they will still be the 3rd best team in the Tri-Sate area...............hahahaha!!!

    April 24, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  7. j

    Now someone else knows how Cleveland felt when the Browns left and when Lebron kissed them off....

    April 24, 2012 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Steevo

    Christie is a classless pig who should never have been elected to public office. Is he still flying the flag at half-staff for Whitney Houston's death? Talk about a slap in the face to every military family in the country!

    April 24, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
  9. JM

    Im not from NJ but from the few things that i have heard christie say, he def. sounds like a JERK, or always MAD at something. Dude u have a job, b happy, shhhheeeeesh!

    April 24, 2012 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Chuck Taylor

    I hate everything about New York,especially the stankees

    April 24, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  11. RIP2HIM

    Chuck Taylor...no one cares!!
    NYC all day!

    April 25, 2012 at 8:39 am | Report abuse |
  12. Donald in CA

    Getting away from that fat, crude and abusive govenor might help the teams moral. Who cares, Brooklyn.

    April 25, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Mike

    Good riddance huh? Christie should say that to all the crap he shoves down his porker gullet. What a class act. Maybe a healthier governor would command more respect.

    April 25, 2012 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Greyman

    NJ's fatso governor, keepin' it classy, as always.

    April 25, 2012 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
  15. jeff greenwald

    Jason Kidd is a great player but there will never be another Julius Erving!!!!!!

    April 26, 2012 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
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