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

Much higher this time.

Brooklyn confronted a shorthanded opponent on the highway for the second-straight night time following Tuesday’s embarrassing loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. The Toronto Raptors have been with out All-Stars Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet, final 12 months’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, profitable 112-98 for the workforce’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 complete factors, 26 got here within the second half, the third-highest-scoring half he is had as a Net.

“Just enjoying in stream,” stated Kyrie about his method. “Just ready for alternatives, letting the sport come to me. And simply trusting that we have been simply gonna make the fitting 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 pretty much as good because it seemed as Net, swarming Toronto’s ball-handlers—Gary Trent Jr. and Malachi Flynn—to select off three steals and two blocks.

“Ben, as you’ll be able to see, is simply feeling higher bodily, which helps us,” defined Jacque Vaughn. “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, and so they’re studying play with him and play together 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 score.

“I imply, we all know what Kev’s succesful of,” stated Kyrie Irving. “Some nights are gonna appear like 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 area objectives, the fourth-straight recreation the workforce has recorded 30+ assists.

Interior protection was a significant energy for the Nets, particularly within the second half, as Brooklyn—the league chief in rejections—recorded 11 complete 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 the next customary. I believed from the start of the sport, you noticed that: much more discuss from one another, much more communication, much more demand from one another, which was nice to see as properly.”

They additionally restricted exterior taking pictures alternatives and held Toronto to 24.1% taking pictures on simply 29 seems to be 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 robust play with 4 early factors and one steal and was a significant cause the Nets recorded six early quick break factors. Claxton was equally forceful, 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 robust facet. 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. ran to get it going. Meanwhile, offensive rebounding continued to be an issue for the Nets after the brutal night time in Philadelphia, with the Raptors grabbing 10 early offensive rebounds by way of one-and-a-half quarters. As such, issues have been largely twisted up for almost all of the interval as neither workforce might discover any type of rhythm.

Edmond Sumner checked in on the 5:34 mark within the second and shortly 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 the ball up twice (During 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 have been down simply 52-51 against Brooklyn after two durations.

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 the Raptors’ ball-handlers to tear away two steals.

“So far, that is the perfect I felt in phrases of simply transferring,” stated Simmons after the sport. “Obviously, it is a back-to-back and I believe my minutes have been alleged to be decrease, however I used to be attempting to push myself and I needed to be on the market and assist the workforce 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 abruptly 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 properly faraway from the offense. Some puzzled, did he need a commerce? Had Brooklyn’s punishment of an 8-game suspension induced 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 facet. He was almost as impactful within the fourth, dropping 7 factors to lift his second-half complete to 26.

The snatch-back dribble was his closest ally, first displaying the transfer within the third quarter on this beautiful stepback three. He almost 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.

When he is received it going, there is not any one like him.

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

“Healthy. He lastly received his legs underneath 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 instructed the media. “”But when a man does not play two 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 night time, he is enjoying 30-plus minutes, it takes time.”

Milestone Watch

KD passes KG. With his tenth level originally 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 checklist. 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 wherein he apologized deeply for the hurt he induced Jewish individuals together 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 determination to not conduct an interview with YES – the Nets’ rightsholder – 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 determination to go to a direct rival vexed a number of YES staffers, a supply instructed The Post. The consternation was not believed to have reached the chief degree.

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

NetsEach day tried to get a remark from YES on the story however there was no fast response.

What’s subsequent

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

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

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