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Nets coach Lionel Hollins: Quiet leadership can speak volumes

Head coach Lionel Hollins of the Brooklyn

Head coach Lionel Hollins of the Brooklyn Nets reacts during a game against the Philadelphia 76ers at Barclays Center on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015 in Brooklyn, New York. Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

Ask Lionel Hollins about a specific player on his team, and more often than not, he’ll crease his brow in consternation. He’ll squint in disbelief. He will remind everyone and anyone that basketball is a team game, and the team decides whether the Nets win or lose.

It should come as no surprise, then, that his thoughts on vocal leadership — that one player can motivate the men around him with the sound of his voice — verge on the unorthodox.

“That’s just annoying people,” he said at practice at Barclays Center on Friday. “The worst kind of leadership is that ‘rah-rah, come on, everybody!’ . . . Too much is made of leadership. Everybody should be a leader on the court.”

The Nets’ leading scorer is Brook Lopez, an easygoing giant with a low baritone who might be incapable of “rah-rah.” There is Thaddeus Young, who has 11 double-doubles, and there’s Jarrett Jack. But the Nets don’t have an apparent vocal leader, and Hollins thinks that’s just fine.

“Leadership comes by you going out there and doing your job to the best of your ability as hard as you can consistently,” he said.

The Nets have benefited from a constantly rotating cast of contributors in winning six of their last seven home games. Shane Larkin and Andrea Bargnani were key off the bench in the 100-91 win over the 76ers on Thursday night.

“I think leadership is like, ‘OK, somebody’s missed two or three, don’t worry about it, I got you, I’m going to come back to you again,’ ” Hollins said. “That’s leadership. Just showing confidence and helping guys be better.”

Force with Lopez. Star Wars fan Lopez is more than ready for his bobblehead doll day on Monday, which also happens to be Star Wars night at Barclays Center. The doll, which shows Lopez in Jedi robes and toting a blue lightsaber, comes in anticipation of “The Force Awakens,” which hits theaters on Thursday (Lopez will catch it in Indiana). “I’m pretty pleased,” he said. “I think I look good in the Jedi robes and that I absolutely would choose to lounge around in black sweatpants under my Jedi robes.”

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