Nets take care of business against short-handed Raptors, 112-98

Much higher this time.

Brooklyn confronted a short-handed opponent on the highway for the second-straight evening following Tuesday’s embarrassing loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. The Toronto Raptors had been with out All-Stars Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet, final yr’s Rookie of the Year Scottie Barnes, in addition to Otto Porter Jr., Precious Achiuwa, and Dalano Banton.

After a sluggish first half, the Nets took care of business convincingly, successful 112-98 for the crew’s ninth victory of the season. Brooklyn now sits at 9-10.

Despite a quiet first half, Kyrie Irving went completely nuclear within the second, placing up 29 factors on 11-of-16 taking pictures and 5-of-8 from three. Of his whole factors, 26 got here within the second half, the third-highest-scoring half he had as a Net.

“Just taking part in in movement,” stated Kyrie about his strategy. “Just ready for alternatives, letting the sport come to me. And simply trusting that we had been simply gonna make the suitable basketball performs on the market for one another.”

Ben Simmons had yet one more promising outing, placing up 14 factors on 7-of-9 taking pictures and 6 assists. His protection was nearly as good because it seemed as Net, swarming Toronto’s ball-handlers—Gary Trent Jr. and Malachi Flynn—to choose off three steals and two blocks.

“Ben, as you’ll be able to see, is simply feeling higher bodily, which helps us,” Jacque Vaughn defined. “For him to go coast-to-coast and get straightforward baskets for us, to push the tempo for us to get open pictures for everyone else, they usually’re studying learn how to play with him and play along with his tempo.”

Kevin Durant, in the meantime, had a quiet recreation by his requirements with 12 factors however moved previous Kevin Garnett’s 26,071 factors for 18th on the all-time scoring leaderboard. Next up for Durant is John Havlicek with 26,395 factors. And regardless of that low output, KD led the Nets with a +30 ranking.

“I imply, we all know what Kev’s succesful of,” stated Kyrie Irving. “Some nights are gonna appear to be this for us, however I would not depend on it being constant. He’s gonna do his factor on the market on the scoring finish. But he was impactful in different methods tonight” three blocked pictures, plus-minus of 30. Only 12 factors, 5-for-10. I imply, I’ll take it. And the win.”

All 5 Brooklyn starters scored double-digit factors. Nic Claxton recorded his sixth double-double of the season with 14 factors and 10 rebounds, and Royce O’Neale hit a season-best 5 3-pointers for 15 factors. Brooklyn additionally garnered 32 assists on 45 made discipline targets, the fourth-straight recreation the crew has recorded 30+ assists.

Interior protection was a serious power for the Nets, particularly within the second half, as Brooklyn—the league chief in rejections—recorded 11 whole blocks to the Raptors’ two.

“You did not see as many breakdowns on the finish of performs tonight, the focus degree,” stated Jacque Vaughn after the sport. “So a giant piece of that’s simply holding one another to a better commonplace. I believed from the start of the sport, you noticed that: much more speak from one another, much more communication, much more demand from one another, which was nice to see as effectively.”

They additionally restricted outdoors taking pictures alternatives and held Toronto to 24.1% taking pictures on simply 29 seems from deep. The Nets, in the meantime, could not miss and shot 54.9% from the sector and 44.7% from three.

Brooklyn’s frontcourt was impactful from the bounce. Simmons continued his sturdy play with 4 early factors and one steal and was a serious motive the Nets recorded six early quick break factors. Claxton was equally highly effective, patrolling the paint with mastery en route to 6 factors, three rebounds, and two blocks. Their Nets constructed an early 21-12 benefit earlier than the six-minute mark.

Brooklyn maintained that benefit till Cam Thomas checked in on the finish of the quarter. Thomas received on the board with 4 fast factors and an help however then gave up a nook three by serving to from the sturdy aspect. Such is the yin and yang of counting on younger gamers. Brooklyn completed forward 38-26 to finish the primary.

Toronto began the second quarter on a 13-0 run as Gary Trent Jr. started to get it going. Meanwhile, offensive rebounding continued to be an issue for the Nets after the brutal evening in Philadelphia, with the Raptors grabbing 10 early offensive rebounds by way of one-and-a-half quarters. As such, issues had been largely twisted up for almost all of the interval as neither crew might discover any kind of rhythm.

Edmond Sumner checked in on the 5:34 mark within the second and rapidly received on the board with a layup in transition whereas chopping from the weakside, after which he scored on a pick-six because of some nice point-of-attack protection. This gave the Nets a seven-point lead. Unfortunately, Brooklyn proceeded to cough up the ball twice (Durant being one of the culprits for one of his 5 first-half turnovers), and Toronto evened issues up. Despite Toronto taking pictures simply 18% from three within the first half, the Raptors had been down simply 52-51 against Brooklyn after two intervals.

Brooklyn lastly received it going within the third quarter. Kyrie Irving broke his silence with a pull-up two, a 3, and a layup on the fastbreak by way of contact. Behind the elevated effort to start out the second half, the Nets went on a 10-0 run.

The Nets continued to pour it on within the third. Kyrie was splashing pictures left and proper, and Ben Simmons wreaked havoc against Raptors’ ball-handlers to tear away two steals.

“So far, that is the very best I felt in phrases of simply transferring,” stated Simmons after the sport. “Obviously, it is a back-to-back and I believe my minutes had been speculated to be decrease, however I used to be attempting to push myself and I wished to be on the market and assist the crew win.”

Kevin Durant, in the meantime, turned up the depth on protection and contested a number of pictures on the rim for 3 blocks. Behind the efforts of their three stars, the Nets grew the result in 91-76 to finish the third.

Brooklyn continued to maintain the defensive depth excessive within the fourth quarter. Royce O’Neale ripped away two steals, and all of a sudden Brooklyn’s lead grew to twenty. The Nets by no means seemed again, cruising over the end line with a 14-point benefit.

The Film Room

It’s at all times enjoyable watching Kyrie Irving go on a heater.

He seemed despondent, passive, and disengaged within the first half. Many on social media puzzled what was occurring. It was his third-straight recreation of showing completely disinterested within the product on the ground, whiffing off-ball rotations, and showing effectively faraway from the offense. Some puzzled, did he need a commerce? Had Brooklyn’s punishment of an 8-game suspension precipitated Irving to take a look at mentally?

Then the third quarter occurred. Irving poured in 19 factors whereas oscillating completely on and off the ball—creating his personal shot when wanted, pouring in catch-and-shoot threes, and attacking the second aspect. He was practically as impactful within the fourth, dropping 7 factors to boost his second-half whole to 26.

The snatch-back dribble was his closest ally, first displaying the transfer within the third quarter on this attractive stepback three. He practically crossed poor Chris Boucher to Vancouver.

He revved up the transfer later within the third, this time contained in the three-point line for a patented long-two, which he swished with perfection. Thad Young does a greater job containing, however nonetheless, simply nasty stuff from Kyrie.

“We’re within the business for successful,” stated Kyrie Irving, who poured in a game-high 29 factors. “So we’ll take this one, particularly after [Tuesday] evening’s loss and the entire web going up in an uproar in phrases of how embarrassed we needs to be — which is true — and we simply wished to verify we paid consideration to element. We got here out and responded.”

His teammates agreed.

“Just being Kyrie,” Simmons stated. “That’s what we wish him to do — simply being himself to have that confidence to return out and take these pictures and be who he’s.”

When he is received it going, there is no one like him.

Slow begin no extra for Ben10

After not scoring in double figures within the first 9 video games of the season — and inflicting a lot handwringing amongst followers and pundits alike, Ben Simmons is on a roll. In the final 5 video games, Simmons has averaged 14.6 factors, 7.0 rebounds, 6.4 assists, 1.6 steals, 1.2 blocks and taking pictures practically 80% (78.6% to be exact) total. He’s taking pictures solely 53.8% from the road, however all these numbers are effectively consistent with his profession numbers, apart from taking pictures share. He’s approach above his profession quantity which is 56.1.

The pattern is getting smaller, too. Moreover, Simmons recreation is constructing.

Markieff Morris defended Simmons’ sluggish begin and defined why he is not shocked by what seems like a sudden change in his teammate’s play. He had one phrase to explain it.

“Healthy. He lastly received his legs beneath him. He was off for 2 years. Y’all would not give him an opportunity, y’all need to criticize him after each fu***** recreation…” Morris informed the media. “”But when a man does not play for 2 years — as a result of clearly y’all would not know as a result of none of y’all performed within the NBA, he needed to get his physique proper. Contact each evening, he is taking part in 30-plus minutes, it takes time.”

Milestone Watch

KD passes KG. With his tenth level in the beginning of the second half, Kevin Durant (12 factors) recorded his 26,072nd profession level, transferring previous Kevin Garnett (26,071) into 18th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring listing. Next up: John Havlicek (26,395 factors).

The Nets completed with 32 assists, the primary time since March 1987 that they posted 4 straight video games of 30 or extra assists.

The Nets shot 17-of-38 from 3-point vary, a season excessive for makes. The Raptors completed 7-of-29, matching their fewest made 3-pointers of the season.

YES Network upset with Kyrie Irving?

Ian Begley of SNY received a giant unique final weekend, the primary interview with Kyrie Irving, one by which he apologized deeply for the hurt he precipitated Jewish individuals along with his posting of a hyperlink to an antisemitic video. It was a giant “get” for the veteran NBA reporter and his community.

So, one needed to marvel why YES Network, the Nets TV rights holder — and SNY’s rival — did not get the interview. Now, Brian Lewis and Josh Kosman of the Post contend that YES was not happy by Irving’s selection.

Kyrie Irving’s choice to not conduct an interview with YES – the Nets’ rights holder – earlier than the Brooklyn star was reinstated pissed off some on the community, sources near the state of affairs stated.

Going to a direct rival was simply salt within the wound…

The choice to go to a direct rival vexed a number of YES staffers, a supply informed The Post. The consternation was not believed to have reached the manager degree.

Lewis and Kosman report that the interview with Begley was not arrange by way of the Nets and be aware that Richard Jefferson, half of the YES Network crew, was publicly essential of Irving’s choice. Among the unanswered questions: Did YES ask for an interview? Did Irving reply?

NetsDay by day tried to get a remark from YES on the story, however there was no rapid response.

What’s subsequent

Brooklyn heads to Indiana for a recreation on Friday after splitting the season sequence 1-1 earlier within the season. Coverage begins on YES Network at 8:00 pm EST.

For a unique perspective of tonight’s recreation, head to Raptors HQ, our Raptors sister website.

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