March 31, 2023

Do that 4 in a row and 7 of the final 9.

The Nets are one of many hottest groups in basketball, climbing two video games above .500 with a 114-105 win over the Toronto Raptors in entrance of a sell-out crowd of 17,732 on the Barclays Middle on Friday evening.

They led by a full 36 factors earlier than permitting the Raptors to return to the sport on the finish of the fourth quarter.

After digging 2–6 holes early within the season, the Nets (13–11) scored a full 180 factors. They’re approaching contender standing, though they nonetheless have large alternatives to beat to separate themselves from the cream of the NBA crop. .

And it seems to be and feels completely different when the Nets do not rely too closely on Kevin Durant or Kyrie Irving like they did final season.

Durant’s minutes have been the topic of controversy in Brooklyn, as they have been final 12 months. He entered Friday’s recreation because the league’s chief in minutes, factors and discipline objectives. At age 34 and aged 15, the Nets star is averaging 37 minutes per recreation for the second straight season.

“We needed to play Kevin for extra minutes than we needed,” head coach Jacque Vaughn stated earlier than kickoff. “That is precisely the place we’re. He understands it.”

Nevertheless, when Durant has assist, issues are completely different, and it reveals on the scoreboard.

Sniper Joe Harris fired up early, scoring 11 factors within the first quarter alone. After battling a droop in capturing and scoring 4 of six trebles in Wednesday’s win over the Washington Wizards, Harris, who began instead of an injured Ben Simmons (calf sprain), hit 5 extra trebles to attain 17 factors towards the Raptors on Friday.

Royce O’Neal hit three well-timed 3-pointers and Kyrie Irving took over many of the capturing load, scoring 27 factors on 17 photographs. Veteran ahead T.J. Warren, in his Nets debut after lacking two-plus seasons with consecutive stress fractures in his left foot, scored 10 factors on 5 of 11 photographs off the bench.

And Nick Claxton added 15 factors and 9 rebounds to finish the sport with a dunk, then an offensive rebound and a end that prolonged the Nets’ result in 16.

He pressured Raptors coach Nick Nurse to name his penultimate timeout with 4 minutes left within the fourth.

It was Durant’s lightest load of the season. He nonetheless performed 38 minutes, however they have been ineffective. He hit simply 10 photographs and had 17 factors, 9 rebounds and 7 assists.

The Nets prolonged their result in 36 factors and watched the Raptors shut the result in seven within the remaining minute of the fourth quarter. It was a nasty ending, however the Nets have not gotten off simple this season.

They’ve an opportunity to do it 5 instances in a row on Sunday, although they will should undergo final 12 months’s Japanese Convention champion Boston Celtics to take action.


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