March 25, 2019

With the win, the Nets move back into the No. 6 spot in the NBA Eastern Conference; Spencer Dinwiddie leads all scorers with 19 points

For the first time in a good long while, the atmosphere in the Barclays Center was like the NBA playoffs; it was over-the-top electric, as the Brooklyn Nets beat the Detroit Pistons 103-75. Wowza! With the win, the Nets have won four straight games and got back to the sixth position in the NBA Eastern Conference right behind the Boston Celtics. The Nets improved to 36-33 overall and 21-16 at Barclays Center, while the Pistons fell to 34-32 overall and 13-19 on the road with the loss.

By the Numbers

The Nets held the Pistons to .278 shooting (27-of-97) from the field, which marked a season-low for a Nets' opponent field goal percentage and the third-lowest opponent field goal percentage in franchise history. You would have to go all the way back to November 9, 2004, to a Nets vs. Portland Trail Blazers game when the Nets held the Trail Blazers to a .244 field goal percentage, yikes! And, on March 7, 2006, against the Phoenix Suns when the Nets held the Suns to a field goal percentage of .268.

Not only did the Detroit Pistons lose, right now they are a team that holds the dubious distinction of a Nets’ opponent with a season-low 75 points, that has to sting. But that is better than ending the game with 62 points, which is what the Pistons had after three quarters – Nets 88 Pistons 62.

But don’t despair, Detroit, you’re not the only team that the Brooklyn Nets led by 26 after three quarters. Just last week on March 4, the Nets led the Dallas Mavericks by 26 points at the end of the third quarter with a score of 99-73. But wait, there’s more. The Nets held the San Antonio Spurs to the fewest points at the end of the third this season, which was 81-59.

Brooklyn also edged Detroit 54-24 (+30) in points in the paint and 18-5 (+13) in fast break points.

What stuck out most about the Nets for Detroit Pistons head coach Dwyane Casey, was “just the physicality of the game – they came in and whipped us every which way there was. We didn’t fight through screens, we didn’t set screens, any phase of basketball you want to talk about. If we’re serious about making the playoffs, we have to come out and not believe all the hype and all the stuff. We didn’t come out and play. I didn’t coach physical enough or whatever. We didn’t play physical enough. We took a full step back tonight.”

“Everything kind of aligned tonight,” said Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson. “I thought the game plan was good and the guys executed well, especially defensively. Detroit was coming off a game the night before, and it is late in the season, so we had more juice tonight. I don’t say that to take anything away from our guys.”

“It was another step from all our other games,” Brooklyn Nets center Jarrett Allen explained. “We knew that we had to bring a certain physicality against Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin, so we had to turn it up a little bit.”

So how did Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin fare when it was all said and done?

Andre Drummond scored 13 points, 20 rebounds, and three assists for Detroit, while Blake Griffin added 10 points, seven rebounds, and six assists.

While the Pistons only had two players to score 10 points or more, the Nets had seven.

Spencer Dinwiddie came off the bench to lead all scorers with 19 points (5-of-11 FG, 7-of-7 FT), Allen Crabbe scored a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, and he added four assists; Rodions Kurucs posted 13 points; both Joe Harris and Caris LeVert tallied 12 points, Harris accumulated four rebounds and three assists to his totals, while LeVert who came off the bench and added five rebounds to his points. Both Jarrett Allen and D’Angelo Russell each scored 11 points, Allen added eight rebounds and two blocked shots to his totals, while Russell added seven assists, three rebounds, and two steals.

What's Next

Tomorrow, Wednesday, March 13, 2019, the Brooklyn Nets kick off their seven-game road trip with their first stop in Oklahoma City to play the Thunder and their last game on this road trip is against the Philadelphia 76ers on March 28, 2019, before returning home to play the Boston Celtics on Saturday, March 30, 2019, at 6:00 p.m. at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Pistons will travel to Miami to play the Miami Heat, another team struggling to make the playoffs. This match-up will be on Wednesday, March 13, 2019, at 7 p.m. ET.

Dinwiddie hits game-winning 3-pointer, and Nets crush Pistons’ hopes of getting a win on the road

Let’s set the scene. The Brooklyn Nets are at home at the Barclays Center. Spencer Dinwiddie knocks down a three-pointer to pull the Nets ahead by one point with 7.1 seconds left in overtime. And then after a timeout, Blake Griffin misses a 19-foot turnaround fadeaway shot at the 1.3-second mark that could have pulled the Detroit Pistons ahead. Nets guard Caris LeVert grabs the rebound, and the horn sounds to seal a Brooklyn Nets 120-119 win over the Pistons and pandemonium sets in. Well, pandemonium may be hyperbole, but it was close, as the last Nets win at home was on October 19, 2018, against the New York Knicks. Now, the Nets home record at the Barclays Center for the season is 2-1, and their record overall for this young season is 3-5, while the Pistons fell to 4-3 overall and 1-2 on the road with the loss.

The player of the game, Dinwiddie, scored a season-high 25 points (8-of-15 FG, 5-of-9 3FG, 4-of-4 FT) with four rebounds and four assists in 32 minutes off the bench. With 21 seconds left in the fourth stanza, Dinwiddie also tied the game (110-110) to send the game into overtime, scoring 17 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter and overtime period combined. Dinwiddie has now tallied 20-plus points twice this season. Ironically, his previous season-high 23-point performance came against the Pistons in the season opener at Detroit on October 17th, but the Nets lost 103-100.

But last night, a three-pointer nearly at the buzzer from Dinwiddie, a missed shot from Griffin and a rebound from LeVert sealed the win. 

The irony here is that the Detroit Pistons selected Dinwiddie with the 38th overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft. Dinwiddie spent two years with the Pistons going back and forth between the Pistons and its G-League Team the Grand Rapids Drive and in October 2016, the Pistons traded Dinwiddie to the Windy City Bulls, the Chicago Bulls developmental team. After all that development, the Brooklyn Nets acquired Dinwiddie on December 8, 2016. 

So, did Dinwiddie want to prove a point?

“At this point, no,” Dinwiddie said. “Players have changed. Coaching staff has changed. I was just able to hit a couple shots and help my team win. That’s about it.”

What was really important to Dinwiddie was ending the Nets losing streak.

“That was the thing that made this win really big for us – because of the losing streak,” Dinwiddie added. “Because of what we’re fighting for. We’re trying to be a good team and trying to change the tide of Nets teams of the past. You’ve got to learn how to get out of a rut quickly. They can string together and it can affect morale and all that other stuff.”

Now, before you start thinking that this article is all about the Spencer Dinwiddie Show, other Nets players made significant contributions as well.

Brooklyn Nets forward Joe Harris scored a season-high 23 points (8-of-14 FG, 4-of-7 3FG, 3-of-3 FT) with five rebounds in 41 minutes.

Harris commented on the magnitude of the Nets improving in clutch situations.

“Yeah, that’s huge for us in terms of the maturation of everyone,” Harris stated. “We’ve been in this experience a lot. A lot of close games last year, a lot of close games to start this season. For us to close one out – execute down the stretch – take care of the ball. Execute defensively. This is huge in terms of confidence for us and just a big morale boost whenever you get a win like this.”

LeVert, in addition to grabbing the rebound at the end of the game, also had a big night for the Nets, tallying 19 points with six rebounds, six assists, and two steals. LeVert gets the vote for “most-improved” Nets player this season, as he has averaged a team-leading 18.9 points per game through eight games this season. Ed Davis, a Nets pick-up this summer from the Portland Trail Blazers for his rebounding abilities, did not disappoint. Davis posted a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards (five offensive rebounds) in 18 minutes off the bench. Last night, Davis registered his second double-double off the bench this season through eight games.

Jarrett Allen, in his second season as an NBA player, contributed 14 points (6-of-8 FG) and nine rebounds in 22 minutes, while Jared Dudley, who is in his 11th year with the NBA and his first playing for the Nets, chipped in 11 points, six rebounds and three assists in 38 minutes.

A big win for Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson, as he can see the words and actions of the coaching staff are not falling on deaf ears.

“We were just resilient,” Atkinson told the media postgame. “We’re the resilient team. We fought through a lot of missed opportunities. I thought that we had a bunch of opportunities to close it out and we just kept fighting. The last defensive stop was kind of indicative of our toughness tonight. Caris (LeVert) comes up with the huge rebound at the end, Spencer (Dinwiddie) gets caught in the switch against one of the best players in the league and does a heck of a job. So that was kind of the picture I leave from this game. But they’re (Pistons) a heck of a team. I think that they’re an excellent team. It’s a really good win for us, especially in front of our home crowd. ”

Of course, Detroit Pistons head coach Dwane Casey was disappointed that his team did not get the W.

“You live by the sword and you die by the sword,” Casey said. “…the first few games were close and we were winning them and now we’re losing them. It’s on ourselves, myself, everybody in this locker room. It’s mental things, leave the strong side corner and they knock down a three, miscommunicate on switches and they knock down a three. This team, made us pay for every mental mistake we made. They’re a good 3-point shooting team, so we shouldn’t be surprised when we don’t execute our switches properly.”

Blake Griffin led the Detroit Pistons with the most points at 25 along with nine rebounds, four assists, and two steals.

Griffin told the assembled media that he, too, believes his team’s performance came down to mental mistakes and a collection of little things.

“Yeah, I think so,” Griffin said. “Little mistakes down the stretch, mostly defensively. Like I said earlier on those little things, they come back to bite you, and each game was decided by such a small margin that we got to be better.”

Griffin could have blamed the Pistons’ lack of focus on playing back-to-back games, as they had just played the Boston Celtics the night before in Boston. But, he didn’t.

And, yes, even though Griffin’s last shot to go-ahead for the win didn’t go in, he still relishes the opportunity to have the ball with the game on the line.

“I’ll gladly take that (shot) every single time – try to make the right play,” Griffin said after the game. “I don’t think forcing a shot is very good, but our play kind of got a little mangled. I just tried to get the ball up on the rim, early enough, and unfortunately, it didn’t go in.”

Although, a good deal of the focus was on Griffin because he had the most points of all Pistons’ players. However, truth be told, the real Pistons scoring-player of the game honors should go to Andre Drummond, who tallied 24 points, 23 rebounds, one assist, and one steal. Reggie Jackson added 21 points and four rebounds.

Next up, the Pistons play the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday, November 3, 2018, in Philadelphia.

The Nets play the Houston Rockets at home at the Barclays Center on Friday, November 2, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.

Tip-ins:

Ed Davis’ ninth rebound of the game was his 3,000th career rebound off the bench. He's one of just seven players since 1983-84 to grab 3,000+ boards off the bench, joining Detlef Schrempf, Thurl Bailey, Nick Collison, Chris Andersen, Chris Gatling, and Dennis Rodman.

Nets could not stop Pistons drive; Jarrett Allen, a scoring leader for Nets, and; Andre Drummond and Quincy Acy ejected from the game

Let’s just say the Brooklyn Nets didn’t have it last night, as they lost 108-96 to the Detroit Pistons at the Barclays Center. Or, perhaps, it was fatigue since the Nets were coming off of a 110-109 overtime win over the Miami Heat the night before. No matter how the Nets tried, they simply could not slow down Detroit Pistons led by guard Reggie Jackson, who topped all scorers with 29 points.

And, Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson as much as he hated to admit his team lost its mojo had no other choice but to face the fact that slowing down Detroit just wasn’t in the cards.

“We didn’t,” Atkinson told reporters regarding the Nets inability to slow down the Pistons. “I’ll just make it general. I thought we didn’t have it tonight. Whatever that it is, that energy, that juice, it wasn’t there. They were at a higher level than us in terms of their again, call it juice. Reggie Jackson, heck of a player and he played really well, made some tough shots.”

“Disappointed we gave him 13 free throws,” Atkinson continued. “That facilitates a 29-point game and that’s a point of emphasis for us, not putting teams on the free throw line. They won the free throw battle, 32 free throws to 15, that’s too much. That’s a big disparity. “

Atkinson did have love for his bench.

“I thought our bench group did a great job. You know Caris (LeVert), Nik Stauskas, Q (Quincy Acy), as long as he was in there. I thought those guys fought and our starters, like I said, I don’t think they had the necessary juice tonight. We’ve got to get in late, back-to-back, all that stuff. We have to be more resilient to get through a game like that.”

Not sure what Atkinson is referring to regarding his starters vs. the second unit. Four of the five starters scored in double digits, while only two players scored in double digits off the bench. Stauskas only scored three points, and Acy who only played five minutes before being ejected for fighting scored zero.

Meanwhile, Nets rookie center Jarrett Allen, one of the starting five, scored 15 points, six rebounds, and three blocked shots. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson tallied 14 points, eight rebounds, and three assists. D’Angelo Russell put up 13 points, seven assists, four rebounds, and one blocked shot, and DeMarre Carroll recorded 11 points, four rebounds, and three assists. On the other hand, bench scoring leaders Joe Harris added 15 points and five rebounds, and Caris LeVert chipped in 10 points and seven assists.

The fact of the matter is, this was another game where the Nets dug themselves into a 20-point hole and didn’t have whatever it would have taken to dig themselves out of it.

“We never stopped the bleeding,” Russell explained underscoring the team’s powerlessness to overcome a 20-point deficit in the third quarter. “I feel like we didn’t make that shot or get that stop that we needed to stop the bleeding or that 50/50 play however you want to put it.”

“The defense was good,” Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy said describing his team’s effort to keep the Nets from coming back in the fourth quarter. “Both teams were on fumes going down the stretch. We were just walking the ball up the floor. We had no pace, nothing. But we just grinded it out, so it was a good win.”

In addition to Jackson, Pistons' scoring leaders included starting forward Stanley Johnson who scored 17 points and four assists. Ish Smith came off the bench for the Pistons and scored 17 points, while other starters Andre Drummond added 13 points and 14 rebounds before being ejected for starting a fight with Nets’ Quincy Acy and Anthony Tolliver chipped in 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Next up for the Pistons, is a game on Wednesday, April 4, 2018, in Philadelphia against the Philadelphia 76ers.

The Nets will take on Philadelphia the night before on Tuesday, April 3, 2018, also in Philadelphia. The next home game for the Brooklyn Nets is also its last home game for the season, which will be held on Monday, April 9, 2018, at 7:30 p.m. at the Barclays Center.

Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, and reserves Marcus Thornton and Mirza Teletovic all connected from behind the arc shooting 70% from three point range

Thank God, It's Friday, Right?

For the Brooklyn Nets, this is game No.75, as they host the Detroit Pistons, and this final regular season series between both teams favored the Nets for the first time all-season, The Nets defeated the Pistons, 116-104.

After failing to extend their winning streak to four straight games after taking a trip across the river to face their brothers from another borough in the New York Knicks, the Nets returned home looking to avenge that 110-81 loss. Determined to right their wrongs and protect their home-court, the Nets did exactly that plugging the Pistons, 116-104.

In winning, the Nets extended its franchise record of consecutive wins at home to 15 straight games.

This is a Pistons team that the Nets have struggled against all year in all three of their previous affairs, losing all three contests.

No motivation needed.

Message received.

Timing is of the essence and with a playoff berth guaranteed in the Eastern Conference, the Nets will look to use these last few games as tune-up sessions to further enhance their overall play and performance as they envision a deep playoff run.

For all intended purposes, it's game night and for those who missed tonight's action, this is what followed:

In the first half, following a 22 all conclusion of the first half, the Nets orchestrated a three-point barrage that gave them a comfortable advantage, achieving their highest point differential of 20 points.

Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, and reserves Marcus Thornton and Mirza Teletovic all connected from behind the arc shooting 70% from three point range, 7-10, over a plus 5 min stretch, which aided the Nets improving their overall lead to 51-31 with 5:12 remaining in the second quarter.

Basketball is a game of runs, and like any other NBA team that enjoys an early substantial lead, the Nets botched their lead within the second quarter surrendering a 14-6 run courtesy of the Pistons who cut the deficit to 12, as the Nets progressed into the intermission period ahead 57-45.

And now your second half.

The Nets picked up where they left off in the first half, resuming their offensive efficiency from the field translating it to the second half.

The Pistons made an attempt to close the gap coming to within 10 points on an Andre Drummond put-back lay-up, now trailing 61 to the Nets 71 with 5:36 remaining in the 3rd, but their inability to produce stops on the defensive end of the floor only gave the Nets the benefit of the doubt in maintaining their lead.

With 5:13 left in the third quarter, a Brandon Jennings turnover was retrieved by Williams who spearheaded a one-man fast-break converting on the opposite end via a layup while absorbing a foul by Jennings.

A three-point play was rewarded as Williams sank his +1, and on the ensuing Nets possession, a Pistons turnover resulted in another three from "MT3" the nickname appointed to Teletovic by the Nets game announcer, draining his sixth three-pointer of the the night thus far, with both sequences extending the Nets lead to 17, 78-61 with 4:37 until the end of the 3rd quarter.

The Nets Public announcer addresses the crowd in attendance at every home game before the start of the 4th quarter advising the audience to help encourage the Nets to attain victory against all of their opponents, and in ending his address, commands the thousands in the stands to "Stand UP".

As the crowd stood, the Nets raised their efforts and gave the fans something to cheer about in the closing minutes of the final quarter.

The Pistons made their final attempt to bring drama to this game, slicing the deficit to single digits, down 9 points, 96-87 by a made free throw from Jonas Jerebko with 7:08 existing in the 4th quarter.

Despite the Pistons mission, it came to no avail as an alley-oop pass from reserve Andrei Kirilenko to Shaun Livingston converting with a one-arm slam while being fouled by Jonas Jerebko, gave Livingston a shot at a three-point play which he completed, increasing the Nets back to double-digits, leading 99-87, 6:57 left in the 4th.

More of the same followed from Livingston who connected on a turn-around bank shot with a little over five minutes remaining and a lane driving dunk with emphasis by Paul Pierce with 1:29 left till the resolution spelled their fate in a positive fashion.

The player of the game is reserve Teletovic, better known as "MT3", who continued to display his exploits from behind the arc and his reliability, adding six threes of 10 to the Nets cause, leading all bench scorers with 20 points.

Livingston led all Nets players with 23 points alongside Williams in the starting unit, showcasing his skills that warranted NBA recognition when he was selected 4th overall in the 2004 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Clippers.

Immediately following the Nets win, Livingston shared his thoughts to media correspondents from the Nets locker room regarding their performance at home.

"We've been playing well at this arena," says Livingston to media correspondents.

"I think it's a comfort zone and were just trying to build on the momentum that we have".

Like Livingston, Nets Head Coach Jason Kidd also addressed his team's performance in his post-game press conference, which he commented on the success the Nets enjoyed from downtown.

"The one thing that leads to threes is everyone being unselfish," said Kidd to media correspondents.

"When you're unselfish like that, you get the looks that we're getting from behind the three," Kidd continued.

I'd say it's been a successful year for first-year head coach Kidd, who's leading the same franchise that employed his services as a player and now as a coach to the playoffs in his initial head coaching gig.

The Nets stand motionless in seeding with the win, as they improve their overall regular season record to 41-34 currently cemented 5th in the eastern conference standings, looking up at the Chicago Bulls and ahead of the Washington Wizards.

Only seven games stand on the Nets schedule until the conclusion of their 2013-14 NBA campaign, embarking on a three-game road trip as they visit the likes of the Philadelphia 76ers tomorrow night, and back-to-back contest challenging the Miami Heat and the Orlando Magic respectively.

The Nets have their postseason berth but the season isn't over.

These last few games feature what's wrong with the Eastern Conference and albeit a soft schedule ahead with the one exception in the Miami Heat, the Nets can utilize these games in integrating injured players like Kevin Garnett back into their rotations and fine tuning their overall team production.

With May in sight, it seems like everything is OK in Brooklyn, for now.

Brook Lopez hit the buzzer beater over Pistons' Aron Baynes to lift the Nets to a 98-96 win over the Pistons

It was a night of firsts at the Barclays Center. It was my first basketball game, and it was Brook Lopez's first ever buzzer-beating game winner as the Brooklyn Nets defeated the Detroit Pistons 98-96. The game was competitive all throughout, as the Detroit Pistons are fighting for their playoff lives. Coming into the game the Pistons were tied for the 8th seed with the Miami Heat.

The Pistons played tough through the 1st quarter leading 31-22. Led by Long Island native Tobias Harris with 12 points in the first quarter, the Pistons dominated the points in the paint scoring 18 of their 31 points. Defensively, the Nets toughened up in the 2nd quarter and started hitting their shots, improving their free throw percentage from 29% to 40%. While keeping control of the ball, the Nets only had 3 turnovers and held the Pistons to only 13 points in the second quarter, matching the fewest points the Nets have allowed in any quarter this season. Nets rookie Caris LeVert led the team with 10 points by halftime and the Nets took the lead 50-44.

The third quarter was dominated by the Nets; Lopez scoring 8 points in the quarter, the Nets would take their biggest lead of the night. The fourth quarter, the Pistons started their comeback. Harris led the team in total points with 24 and Andre Drummond had himself a double-double with 13 points and team-high 17 rebounds. Drummond would leave the game in the 4th after suffering a knee injury. They scored 31 points in the 4th quarter. After Harris hit an 8 ft. jumper to tie the game up at 96-96 with 2.4 seconds left, Brook Lopez hit the buzzer beater over Pistons' Aron Baynes with a 10 ft. back-foot jumper to win the game for the Nets for their 14th victory of the season. It was the Nets 2nd buzzer-beating win this season. Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie had a career-high 8 rebounds as a starter tonight. Nets starting guard Jeremy Lin was out due to a sprained right ankle.

After the game, Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said about Lopez's shot, "Brook made a heck of a play. It was more of a catch and shoot but he took a dribble, knew how much time was left and made a heck of a shot. It's more about Brook being a heck of a player."

Brook Lopez said he was very confident in his final shot saying, "It felt good. We executed so well on that last play which is something that we've learned throughout the season to do."

Lopez has now scored 20+ points in each of the last 6 games.

Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said about Lopez's game winner "I thought the defense was pretty good on it... I didn't think Brooklyn got a great, clean look. He's 7'2" and he made a hell of a shot... I don't think there was anything more we could've done on it."
This loss for the Pistons hurt their playoff chances as the Miami Heat won against the Phoenix Suns. They fall a game behind the now 8th and final playoff spot now held by the Heat.

Stan Van Gundy said about the Pistons offense, "our ball movement is sporadic at best. Our offensive energy is not good."

The Pistons look to recapture that offensive spark when they play against the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, March 22nd. The Bulls are just one game behind the Pistons who are also looking to make the playoffs.

The Nets are now 5-7 for the month of March, their best month this season.

Atkinson said after the game, "We're trying to improve on our habits. We have set things that we want to do and we've kind of set the groundwork on how we want to play and now it's just reinforcing those habits, doing it for a longer period of time."

The Nets will look to get their first 2nd straight win this season when they go up against the Phoenix Suns on Thursday, March 23rd.

Nets struggled in the first half, tightened up in second half holding the Pistons to 35 points

It’s NBA preseason and the Brooklyn Nets came out the gate with a win, beating the Detroit Pistons 101-94 at the Barclays Center.

A symbolic victory, but no time to gloat because preseason only counts in that it is a tune-up for the regular season. It’s a time to take stock of where the seepage is located, measure the size of the hole, and determine how to fill it. As a player, it is also the time to give it your best shot in an attempt to make the final roster.

The Pistons had 24 turnovers, which helped the Nets shoot 69 percent in the first quarter.

As a team, the Nets hit 35-of-78 (.449) from the field and 14-of-34 from deep. Defensively, the Nets got out to a rough start, allowing the Pistons to shoot 58% (25-of-43) from the field in the first half, falling behind 59-57 at the break. But in the second half, the Nets tightened up, holding the Pistons to 35 points.

“We struggled in the first half against a good team, a good offensive team, but on the positive side, they only scored 35 points in the second half,” Coach Kenny Atkinson said. “We picked up our activity. I think we were just more active. We got in passing lanes, we caused a lot of havoc out there and that was a real positive defensively.”

Jeremy Lin led the team with 21 points, shooting 7-of-11 including 5-of-8 from deep in just over 17 minutes.

Lin said after Thursday’s game that he knows he won’t be getting eight open 3s every night,

Other Nets players with points in double digits were Joe Harris with 12 points and Luis Scola scored 10. Justin Hamilton and Trevor Booker led the team in rebounding, grabbing five each.

For the Pistons, Andre Drummond and Marcus Morris led their team in scoring, cashing in on 17 points each.

 

Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson forces that kept the Nets in Abeyance

It’s Monday night, the first day of February and the Brooklyn Nets have just lost three consecutive games, including one home game. However, still fresh in the home crowd’s memory at the Barclays Center, is the Nets stunning upset win against the Oklahoma City Thunder, one of the best teams in the NBA.

The crowd at the Barclays Center was hopeful to the end, because overall, the Nets were playing fairly well. However, not well enough to overcome the forces of Andre Drummond, Reggie Jackson and the rest of the Detroit Pistons. It was close, but the Pistons still beat the Brooklyn Nets 105-100.

Brook Lopez, aka The Big Guy”, worked his game, scoring 27 points for the Nets in addition to his five rebounds, two assists, and one steal. Andrea Bargnani put up 18 points and four rebounds off the bench, while starting guard Wayne Ellington contributed 11 points.

The Nets led 57-54 at the half and was just three points (78-75) behind the Pistons at the end of the third quarter.

“We moved the ball, played at a high pace, got up and down, got a lot of shots for AB (Andrea Bargnani) in the mid-range, Markel (Brown) and Bogie (Bojan Bogdanovic) on the three,” said Nets backup point guard Shane Larkin on what the team did to get back into the game in the third and fourth quarter.

But the guys in Black and White couldn’t grab the momentum in the fourth stanza. Could it be that Nets interim head coach Tony Brown changed the game’s momentum when he pulled Larkin out of the game at 6:40 in the fourth with the Nets down by one (90-89)and put in Donald Sloan?

Larkin was making his presence felt; dishing out a career-high 14 assists (previous high: eight assists done five times). He also chipped in eight points and a team-high six rebounds in 22 minutes off the bench.

Larkin is in good company. The last five NBA players prior to Larkin to dish out 14-plus assists in a game in 23 or fewer minutes were: Russell Westbrook (3/4/14 vs. Philadelphia); Manu Ginobili (3/1/13 vs. Sacramento); Rod Strickland (4/23/95 for Portland vs. Golden State); Larry Drew (1/6/91 Los Angeles Lakers v. Golden State); and Muggsy Bogues (4/12/89 for Charlotte at New York). The dates indicate that 14-plus assists in 23 or fewer minutes by a player coming off the bench is no easy feat.

Drummond led the Pistons with 21 points and 18 rebounds and dropped the tie-breaking basket on a dunk with 1:30 remaining.

"I didn't do a great job with Drummond. He got some easy ones," Lopez said. "I tried to wrap him up at the end of the game, making him earn it at the line. But it was something that was a focus tonight."

Jackson, who almost got pulled from the game because of leg cramps by Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy, scored 19 points. As a matter of fact, all Pistons starters scored in double digits: Ersan Ilyasova (16); Kentavious Caldwell (16) and Marcus Morris (12).

Although the Pistons won, Coach Van Gundy was not happy with his team’s performance. Van Gundy can be heard in his own words here.

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