October 19, 2019

Nets win 2019 NBA Free Agency with the acquisition of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and DeAndre Jordan; lose D'Angelo Russell, Ed Davis, and other players

The Brooklyn Nets have been struggling to obtain top-tier NBA players in what seems like forever, and shortly after 6:00 p.m. on June 30, 2019, as soon as the NBA Free Agency period opened, it was as if the Brooklyn Nets hit the lotto. For months, not only did New York City sports talk radio hype Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant going to the New York Knicks during free agency, but their national brethren also chimed in. So, when the news broke that the Brooklyn Nets signed Irving and Durant, radio personalities became punching bags and psychologists depending on the caller. Nets fans came out of the woodwork to express their joy and apprehension. Most were concerned about Durant’s Achilles injury. Some felt a little bit of trepidation about the age Durant will be when he can finally play again, losing D’Angelo Russell, and whether Irving is capable of leading. All are legitimate concerns. But when one looks at the landscape of top-tier NBA players who were free agents, it would have been malpractice for the Nets not to try to sign them. There are also reports that DeAndre Jordan will sign a four-year, $40M deal with the Nets and that Durant and Irving will both take less than the max so DeAndre Jordan can receive $40M. Jordan can also be a help to Nets center, Jarrett Allen, who is going into his third season with the team.

In the last decade, Nets fans have been on a roller coaster ride. They have watched the Nets move from New Jersey to Brooklyn. They were there when Nets management tried to reel in LeBron James, and then later, Dwight Howard in his last year with the Orlando Magic. And, no one can forget the Nets trade with the Boston Celtics for the Big 3: Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry. It was at that introductory press conference presenting the Big 3 that Brooklyn Nets principal owner Mikhail Prokhorov talked about being a championship contender.

 

At the time, most reporters expressed publicly and privately that Billy King did one heck of a great sales job. And, some even laughed, particularly as the Nets’ fortunes started sinking. Truthfully, it was no laughing matter. No business-minded person wants to see red ink on a balance sheet. And to a large extent, during that time, Brooklyn’s economy was tied to the Barclays Center’s profitability. Fortunately, Prokhorov moved quickly and changed the management of the Brooklyn Nets and replaced King with Sean Marks, who brought in Kenny Atkinson, who has a reputation for bringing out the best in players, particularly point guards, as the head coach to replace Lionel Hollins. Prokhorov also did one other thing to help Marks and Atkinson, he gave them the breathing room to right the sinking ship.

Sean Marks and Kenny Atkinson 750x422Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks (l) and Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson

Nets fans already see big things in store for their team. Some are talking rings and others, see this team to be the next Eastern Conference Champions, particularly if Kawhi Leonard leaves the Toronto Raptors. If the Nets with this new composition of players get to the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, this season, it will be considered a smashing success considering the Nets’ history. If it should win the East, and that is a big if, well let’s just say the City of New York will have to close down Flatbush Avenue because there will be dancing in the streets. And, some New Yorkers, because we are a bold bunch, may hold a simultaneous street party in front of Madison Square Garden.

The real NBA Basketball rivalry in New York City starts now.

Leaving Boston Brings Mixed Emotions for Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce

The Brooklyn Nets today introduced its newest team members: Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry.

The players expressed honest emotions about moving to the New York region.

Pierce and Garnett spoke about the difficulty of leaving Boston but understand the Nets provide them with a better opportunity to compete. Pierce, clearly experiencing separation anxiety, revealed a full spectrum of emotions, as he leaves the Boston Celtics, the only NBA franchise he's ever known.

"You know, it's tough," he said, "when you've been in a situation like me for 15 years, and you come to an organization, the Brooklyn Nets. But when you look at what they're trying to do here, win a championship, bring in the pieces necessary – a new arena, new owners, new excitement – it really brings a little bit of excitement.

"Obviously I would have loved to end my career in Boston, but that day and age is probably over with, a lot of players ending their careers in one city. I just, when the trade happened you felt excited, especially with Kevin and Jason coming along (to make) the situation, not only for me but for each other, a little more comfortable. And the ultimate drive is winning a championship. Obviously, Boston is going in a different direction and at this point in our careers, we're championship-driven. We've made a lot of money in our careers, won a number of awards, and I think at this point right now we're all about winning a championship. Brooklyn, we feel, gives us the best opportunity."

Starting with a "What's up, Brooklyn!," Garnett co-signed on Pierce's sentiments about moving from Boston.

"Very similar to what Paul said, I think he summed it up," said Garnett. "It's unfortunate that we have to obviously move from Boston, but I feel like both sides are going in different directions. For me, one of the major reasons I decided to come here was because the bones of this. I feel like adding what you see up here, with the bones of what they have already, with Brook (Lopez), Deron (Williams), Joe (Johnson) and the other pieces they have here, I feel this gives us the best option to win again, to win it all. I'm embracing this opportunity, my family's embracing this opportunity, we're looking forward to it. I'm looking forward to it."

Terry is looking forward to playing in Brooklyn, but his experience is much different from Pierce. His is similar to career military personnel.

"To be able to take another journey with these two outstanding gentlemen right next to me (Pierce and Garnett) is just an honor," said Terry. "I've been in Atlanta, Dallas, Boston. And now to be able to call Brooklyn my home, I'm just very blessed and honored. And ready."

Although Garnett, Pierce, and Terry are ready to roll, it's clear that the trade hit Pierce the hardest.

"It hasn't really sunk in. I think it's really starting to sink in as we speak, just being in this arena," he said. "I saw my jersey up in the locker room, and it's like you saw the trade and it was like, okay there's a trade, but for me to actually be here now looking for a place to live, being in this arena, trying to get to know my way around the city, it's really starting to sink in now that this has become real."

"I'm no longer a Boston Celtic. I'm a Brooklyn Net. That's what it is right now. It's business, at some point we all have to move on. I'm here to try to create some kind of legacy here in Brooklyn."

This probably explains Pierce's recent Twitter frenzy with pictures of him in a Celtics uniform.

Watch VIDEO: Scenes from the Press Conference Introducing Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry

Andrew Rosario, Chief Correspondent, What's The 411SPORTS' takes us inside a press conference held at the Barclays Center introducing the newest members of the Brooklyn Nets team.

Gary Sussman, Vice President, Public Relations, opened the press conference with the introduction of Nets General Manager Billy King who lauded Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry. These new members of the Brooklyn Nets make the team a formidable force in the NBA's Eastern Conference and a championship contender.

Prokhorov Wants A Ring

Brooklyn Nets Principal Owner, Mikhail Prokhorov, flew in from Moscow specifically for this occasion. Prokhorov didn't mince any words, he expects the Brooklyn Nets to be a championship contender. He noted that Garnett, Pierce, and Terry each have at least one ring, while at the present moment, he has none.

Also in attendance were Brooklyn Nets Head Coach, Jason Kidd; Bruce Ratner, Chairman, Forest City Ratner Companies and Developer of the Barclays Center; Brett Yormark, CEO, Brooklyn Nets; and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.

 

Photo Credits: Alexis Williams/What's The 411 Networks

The end-of-season stench of disappointment that occupied the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY, the newly minted home of the NBA Brooklyn Nets, is gone, for now.

What has replenished the stench is a new smell, more appealing to the ever-growing fan base that the Nets continue to grow. That new smell, similar to a new car smell is hope, opportunity, and expectations. Those are the words that can be and will be attached to the Nets as they begin their 2013 NBA campaign on the road against a promising Cleveland Cavaliers basketball club. What's different about this year's assembled Nets team, despite its new home, is billionaire boys' club owner Mikhail Prokhorov's recently retired and just hired NBA coach Jason Kidd and the new additions that they have acquired to help bolster their roster with the expectations of positive results.

Welcome, Paul Pierce, the 36-year-old veteran, or as we like to refer to him as "The Truth", who has produced a resume that boasts an NBA championship, an NBA Finals MVP and 10 All-Star selections most notably. Meet Kevin Garnett, who aided Pierce in achieving their first NBA championship in 2008 with the Boston Celtics. Garnett is also the proud owner of an impeccable resume, which includes 15 All-Star selections, an MVP award, and the Defensive Player of the Year award, utilizing his anger to induce pain on everyone, not on his team. These Hall of Fame-bound players have to be properly introduced and separated from the rest of the players that complete the Nets offseason moves, and those players include journeyman Jason Terry, wingman Alan Anderson, a rehabilitated and resurrected Shaun Livingston, forward Andrei Kirilenko, and 1st Round Draft Pick center, Mason Plumlee. When you review the Nets 2012-2013 NBA season, analyzing their wins, playoff success or lack thereof, and compare it to the offseason roster changes to modify their chances within the eastern conference there's only one question that needs a response. How good can the Nets be this season? I think they can be very good, but at what expense?

When teams agree to swap players, contracts or draft picks, the overall and general goal is to rid themselves of their unwanted parts to gain something in return that they value more than what they have decided to give up. In this case, the Nets gave up relatively young starters and role players in forwards Kris Humphries, Gerald Wallace and guards, Marshon Brooks and Keith Bogans. The combination of Pierce and Garnett representing the upgrades in the starting lineup over Humphries and Wallace at both forward spots is a no-brainer every day of the week, but the difference is which tandem is actually capable of remaining on the court for the duration of an entire 82-game NBA regular season. The Boston Celtics realized that their condensed version of a dynasty, which produced an NBA Championship, had come to a close. On the other hand, the Nets felt that the addition of two soon-to-be Hall-of-Famers may be exactly what they need to make their dreams of contending for the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy a reality.

Basically, the Nets want to win now, but can they really? The Eastern Conference for all intended purposes has regained its honor back in being a respectable conference. The infusion of young talent and well organized and assembled teams spell trouble for the Nets in its climb to reach the mountaintop. Derrick Rose is healthy this year, returning to the same Bulls team that eliminated the Nets in the 1st round of the 2012-2013 postseason. Rose accomplishes the feat of the missing bulk to the Bulls' starting lineup. The Indiana Pacers added backup point guard CJ Watson, and forwards Chris Copeland and Luis Scola to replenish its bench. The Pacers also have All-Star forward Danny Granger back from injury to pair alongside budding star forward Paul George, who enjoyed the finest NBA season of his career averaging 17.4 points and being selected to his first All-Star team. The other NBA team sharing the same state with the Nets in neighboring Manhattan is the New York Knicks. It, too, has altered its roster adding famed NBA bad boy Metta World Peace (formerly Ron Artest) to further improve its team defense. The Knicks also acquired forward Andrea Bargnani from the Toronto Raptors to help take the pressure off star forward Carmelo Anthony on the offensive end of the court. Meanwhile, the defending Champs in the Miami Heat are prepped for another title run. The Heat boasts the "Super Friends" in forwards Lebron James, Chris Bosh, and guard Dwyane Wade. The Heat also added much-needed size to its frontcourt in signing former 2007 number 1 overall draft pick in center Greg Oden, as well as, scoring punch off the bench by forward Michael Beasley, the Heat's former Number 2 overall draft pick in 2008.

On paper, the Nets can contend, but the court is where it matters. The questions that the Nets will be forced to answer beginning October 30th, on the road in a meet and greet with the Cleveland Cavaliers will be: Can Jason Kidd inspire starting point guard Deron Williams to play at a level that we have not seen yet? Can Jason Kidd in his initial year as a Head Coach manage the variety of personalities at his disposal? Will Pierce and Garnett survive the 82-game schedule to play in meaningful games in May and June? Will the defense be able to control the game that best fits their strengths, as they will have a difficult time defending the fast-break as well as completing them? And finally, will the bench be able to pick up the time that Pierce and Garnett will inevitably miss this year to keep the team afloat in their absence? If the Nets can answer all of these questions, Brooklyn will have a summer for the ages, but this is their Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test and not everyone can obtain their Masters.

No two teams in the Eastern Conference went through more of a positive roster change on paper than the Brooklyn Nets and the Detroit Pistons. As it is well documented across the basketball globe, the Nets added Jason Kidd as head coach, along with two soon-to-be Hall of Famers in Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, and five key bench players. The team also added 6th man of the year Jason Terry; Mister all world, Andrei Kirilenko aka AK-47; scoring and defending wing Alan Anderson; former McDonald’s- All American Shaun Livingston; and reserve rookie big man Mason Plumlee out of Duke University. These moves put the Nets atop the NBA elite if everyone can stay healthy and gel quickly since they have an older team.

As for the Pistons, they also added several key pieces that can put them atop the Eastern Conference, starting with the Coach Maurice Cheeks a great mentor to point guards and a former all-star point guard himself. Detroit made a big free agent splash with one of the most dynamic versatile players in the world, Josh Smith. The sign and trade for Brandon Jennings is pivotal in the new NBA where point guards rule the league. Similarly, drafting Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in the lottery fills a major hole in the Piston’s roster. Caldwell-Pope has all the tools of being a top shooting guard in the league. Additionally, an old face from its championship team, Mr. Chauncey “Big Shot” Billups adds playoff experience to a young roster.

For fans that came to the game looking for a point guard showdown, no such luck. Since it is pre-season, some of the key players on both teams were out. Absent were Deron Williams with an ailing right ankle, while Brandon Jennings was marked DNP due to dental issues. More to the point, there are a lot of unanswered questions coming into this season reflected in this game. How will Brook Lopez and Kevin Garnett and Joe Johnson and Paul Pierce complement each other since they have similar games? Is the Nets’ bench deep enough to overcome its aging roster? Can a young athletic team like Detroit be the Nets Achilles heel?

Paul Pierce and Joe Johnson seem to fit better together more so than Kevin and Brook. I guess the chemistry playing with each other earlier in their careers in Boston helped. They were able to make seamless switches on defense and knew when to clear out on the offensive end making sure spacing was adequate. I don’t foresee any problems here.

The combination of Brook Lopez and Kevin Garnett is under construction, but there are positive signs. They both have a high b-ball IQ, so they were able to find each other a lot in the post and in the mid-range, giving each other easy buckets. During the first quarter, they played six minutes. Kevin was 3-3 and Brook was 2-3 from the field, super efficient. On the negative side, Brook and Kevin are both high post players, which can leave the big men too high up and away from boards. They combined for two rebounds in the first quarter. The Nets won’t be able to live up to its lofty preseason expectations with its center and power forward having two rebounds in a quarter and a total of four for the game. Also, the defensive transition was a problem for the two big men. They were late getting back a couple of times leading to easy baskets by Detroit.

That Achilles Heel was present a lot of times tonight. The Pistons looked way too young and athletic tonight for one of the oldest teams in the league. So many easy baskets were scored by Andre Drummond by simply out-running or out-jumping the Nets. This really led to the 99-88 loss to the Pistons. The Nets seem to want to play an up-tempo style. However, I would take notes from the Spurs know when to run because you may get run over.

As I watched the game, I was thinking this could be a tough year for the Nets. I was concerned because I wasn’t sure where the team was going to get its scoring from off the bench. Then I realized former 6th Man of the Year, Jason Terry, was not playing. So I felt less concerned. AK-47, a great pick up, helped on both ends of the floor, offense and defense. His basketball IQ is through the roof. He made some great passes and steals with his great basketball instinct and hustle. I can tell he will be a crowd favorite. I also saw Brooklynite Gary Forbes on the Nets roster. He was a star for Benjamin Banneker High school right downtown Brooklyn. He stepped right in, didn’t look nervous during his 17minutes and looked like he could be a spark plug off the Nets bench. However, Coach Kidd reminded us during the postgame press conference that the Nets’ roster is already set at the maximum 15 guaranteed contracts. So it looks like Mr. Forbes is trying out for other teams.

 

10/17/2013

Editor's note: The Brooklyn Nets have requested waivers on forward Gary Forbes, Nets General Manager Billy King announced tonight. Forbes, who was signed to the training camp roster on September 30, appeared in four preseason games, averaging 6.3 points and 2.0 rebounds per game.

The Nets roster now stands at 17 players.

After battering and bruising the New York Knicks by 41 points on Sunday, Dec. 8, the Boston Celtics lost to the Brooklyn Nets 104-96 on Tuesday at the Barclays Center.

In Deron Williams' return to the lineup after missing nine straight games, he scored 24 points. It was the first match-up for Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce against their former team as members of the Brooklyn Nets.

It was also the first time Garnett played against the Celtics--the last time was March 4, 2007, when he was with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

After the game, Garnett and Pierce both gave credit to Williams who had been out for the majority of the beginning of the season due to a sprained left ankle.

"D-Will set the tone for how we were going to play tonight," Garnett said.

"He's the head of the snake," Pierce said. "I mean he's one of the most important pieces of what we're trying to do here, what we're trying to build and trying to win a championship."

Pierce didn't start, but Williams said he gave the team a 'big boost off the bench.'

Coach Jason Kidd thought so too and has even considered bringing Pierce off the bench going forward.

But Kidd has taken a lot of heat thus far for the Nets' poor record and addressed his job security after fans were calling for his immediate firing.

"That's part of the job, you have to accept it, there are no excuses, you have to try to win," Kidd said when asked about his job. "Whatever any owner decides to do, that's his decision. For us, to have guys ready to play, no matter who it is, injuries or no injuries, you have to have guys ready to play. Patience is something I've always had and I still do and I still believe the process will work itself out. As a whole, we still believe we can win and have a positive season."

Last year, Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov fired coach Avery Johnson after 28 games last season. Assistant coach, PJ Carlesimo took over for the remainder of the 2013-2014 Season, but he too was fired after the Nets lost in the first round of the playoffs to the Chicago Bulls.

The Nets will take on the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday.

Despite Williams and Lopez Absence Nets Ekes Out a Win

With the face of the franchise, Deron Williams undergoing yet another procedure to help cure his ailing ankles and without leading scorer Brook Lopez out for the rest of the year, the Brooklyn Nets and their modest 3-game winning streak took on the hottest team in the NBA. The Golden State Warriors, coached by ex-NY Knick Mark Jackson came into the Barclays Center on a 10 game winning streak, the last 6 on the road. They were looking to make history by becoming the first team to win 7 consecutive games on the road.

The Nets biggest task would come on the defensive end trying to figure out how to contain 3-point sharpshooters Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. It didn't take long for both of them to start showing their shooting prowess. Tied at 6, Curry and Thompson hit 2 three-pointers each.

Said Nets starting guard Shaun Livingston, "they came out guns blazing."

Warriors Andre Iguodala added a 3 of his own and before the fans popcorn was cold, Golden State took a 16 (32-16) point lead. Brooklyn joined the 3-point party to close out the first period with baskets by Mirza Teletovic and Joe Johnson closing the gap to 10 (32-22).

Brooklyn took advantage to begin the second with both Curry and Thompson on the bench outscoring Golden State 11-4 (35-33) to get back in the game. Lee, who scored 11 first-half points, hits 3 straight baskets putting them up by 5 (34-38) before the Nets closed out the half with a flurry.

Kevin Garnett's first attempt and basket gave the Nets their first lead of the second half (47-46) and when Teletovic banked a 3-pointer at the buzzer, Brooklyn took 59-52 lead into the half. The Nets hoping that the Warriors second game in a row would catch up to them in the second half.

The hot shooting for both teams (52% for both) that paced them in the first half, cooled off considerably to begin the third period. At one point, Brooklyn missed 6 straight shots allowing Golden State to stay within 3 at 69-66. Curry then showed why he is an all-around player. Driving to the basket, he puts up a left-handed, floating shot as he gets banged by Teletovic the ball falling through the net getting them within 1 (74-73). Warriors Harrison Barnes 3-pointer gave them a 1-point lead (76-75) going into the final period.

Kevin Garnett Saves the Day

Neither team led by more than 4 (Nets 93-89) as the score was tied on six different occasions with the horrid shooting continuing. At one stretch, the Warriors would go almost 5 minutes without a field goal. The last tie at 93 came after an Andre Blatche (17 points off the bench) fade-away. With the game seemingly in hand, Livingston commits an unforgivable foul sending Curry to the free-throw line after fouling him behind the arc. Curry calmly sinks all three getting them within two points (98-96) and then old man Kevin Garnett saved the day and the streak for Brooklyn.

 

Kevin Garnett MVI 6107 750x422.MOVKevin Garnett speaking with the media. Photo Credit: What's The 411 Networks

 

Aside from hitting on 3 of 4 baskets in the period, he steals a Curry pass attempt then hits 2 free throws to ice the game. Said Nets head coach Jason Kidd of Garnett's performance, "he looks like he's 25. Tonight defensively, he looked like he was 21."

The Brooklyn Nets were led by Joe Johnson and his 27 points while Curry finished with a game-high 34.

Unaware that his team was on the brink of making history, Jackson although disappointed in the loss focused on the bigger picture.

"None of us knew who actually held the record prior to us. The history we're chasing after is bigger than a 7-game road trip."

The Nets, as a team, made a conscious effort to put 2013 in their rearview and focus on 2014. Not a bad start after losing their most important player for the year and hoping their other important player could rebound from ankle problems.

 

Nets general manager sees tremendous upside in drafting young European players to play with Brooklyn Nets

It’s NBA Draft night and the excitement among NBA fans in the arena at the Barclays Center, as well as reporters in the Brooklyn Nets press room is quite apparent. For the last several years, Brooklyn Nets’ fans have been sidelined during the early rounds of the draft because of a trade with the Boston Celtics in 2013 that brought Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry to Brooklyn. If it were not for some fancy maneuvering every year on the part of Nets’ management, Brooklyn wouldn’t have a pick at all until 2019, as its picks were part of the deal with Boston.

Brooklyn Nets 2018 NBA Draft Picks

With the Nets first pick of the night at No. 29, general manager Sean Marks selected Dzanan Musa from Bosnia, who plays for Cedevita of the Croatian League. We don’t generally get news about European players, but Musa happens to be ranked No. 18 in ESPN’s Top 100. Musa, who is 19-years-old, has lived on his own since he was 11-years-old and moved to Croatia to join KK Cedevita at age 15. It's not that many people in the world with that type of initiative.

VIDEO: Sean Marks speaks highly of Dzanan Musa

 

Next up at No. 40, the Nets selected 20-year-old Rodions Kurucs from Latvia. Marks personally scouted Kurucs while he played with his Spanish league team.

At No. 45, the Nets selected Hamidou Diallo and promptly traded his rights to the Charlotte Hornets.

VIDEO: Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks on Dzanan Musa and Rodions Kurucs

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson leads the Nets’ charge to defeat the Dallas Mavericks 114-106

The Brooklyn Nets hosted the Dallas Mavericks at the Barclays Center in the evening on St. Patrick’s Day, and the luck of the Irish was on the side of Nets, as they defeated the Mavericks 114-106. The win gives the Nets a record of 22-48 so far this season, which is two more than all of last season.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was clicking on all cylinders; he scored a team-high 23 points (9-of-16 FG, 5-of-6 FT) with five rebounds and four assists for the Nets in 32 minutes.

“He had a stretch there that carried us when we were struggling to score,” Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson said about Hollis-Jefferson’s performance. “They were switching and it’s nice to have Rondae there because we can throw it to him on the block and he can take advantage of the switch. That’s huge. If you don’t have that then it’s just iso-ball and you’re driving it every time, you’ve got your guards with the ball out top… I felt like he had a couple of tough ones but I thought he was getting in the lane, that’s his elite skill, driving the ball, got in the lane, got to a spot, made some big shots.”

It wasn’t a walk in the park for the Nets, ending the first quarter with a six-point lead over Dallas, 30-24. Although the Nets led at halftime, 59-56, the Mavericks came charging back in the third quarter to end the third stanza with a one-point lead over the Nets 89-88.

“It was pretty much just locking in,” Hollis-Jefferson said about taking control of the fourth quarter. “Like, who’s going to start it? A lot of the time it’s Caris (LeVert), a lot of the time it’s myself, but pretty much it was definitely a team effort. We talked in the huddle at half court like ‘Hey let’s do it now, let’s do it together, let’s make it hard for them.’ A lot of teams, that’s what they do to us, they want to speed us up, make us take tough shots. Tonight, it worked for us.”

Other Nets scoring leaders included D’Angelo Russell, who recorded 22 points (9-of-17 FG, 4-of-9 3FG) with four rebounds and a team-high six assists in 29 minutes vs. Dallas. Russell is on a scoring roll, he has now tallied 20-plus points in three of his last four games and four of his last six games overall. DeMarre Carroll tallied 19 points and 12 rebounds with three assists, recording his team-leading 12th double-double of the season. Caris LeVert posted 11 points, four rebounds, and three assists in 27 minutes off the bench against the Mavs. LeVert has now scored in double figures in seven straight games. Spencer Dinwiddie posted 12 points, five boards, and four assists in 31 minutes.

Mavericks’ rookie Dennis Smith Jr. led Dallas with 21 points. Unfortunately, Smith left the game in the fourth quarter with a left ankle injury. He got hurt when he stepped on the foot of Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie. Dwight Powell added 18 points. Jalen Jones achieved a career-high 16 for the Mavericks, who made 12 of 22 3-point attempts (54.5 percent) but shot 44.6 percent overall. Dirk Nowitzki contributed 13. Yogi Ferrell, a former Nets player, had 12 points and 12 assists.

Win, lose or draw, it was a great night for Nowitzki, as he reached a milestone in his career against the Nets, appearing in his 1,463rd game, moving past Kevin Garnett into sole possession of fifth place on the all-time list. Congratulations to Nowitzki.

“It’s unbelievable, really,’ Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle said. “Dirk had a terrific game I thought. He shot the ball well when open. He’s still rebounding well. He’s a leader out there. It’s just amazing that he has just been able to keep going. We all hope it never ends.”

Next, up for the Mavericks, they travel to New Orleans to play the Pelicans on Tuesday, March 20th at 7 p.m. CDT.

Meanwhile, the Nets take on the Memphis Grizzlies at home at the Barclays Center on Monday, March 19th at 7:30 p.m.

VIDEO DISCUSSION: Jeremy Lin, Quincy Acy, and Kevin Garnett among NBA veterans that provide suits and other gifts to NBA rookie teammates

Now here’s a feel-good story about Brooklyn Nets, guard, Jeremy Lin.

During training camp, Jeremy Lin bought suits for his teammates. Lin bought suits for players, coaches, video coordinators, physical therapists, and security guards.

Abe Ndoye, who has been Lin’s tailor since he played in Houston, began the first of three days of training camp measuring and advising.

It turns out that providing new suits to rookie players may not be that unusual. Quincy Acy did something similar for his D-League teammates once he was acquired by the Nets and Kevin Garnett used to do it for rookies.

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