On the latest episode of #BKConnect, Rod Boone, Chris Shearn, and myself discuss Jason Kidd's decision to dismiss Lawrence Frank, the emergence of Mirza "Fearza" Teletovic, and whether or not Joe Johnson and Paul Pierce can coexist when Pierce returns from his broken hand injury. Mostly watch it for my impeccable fashion sense and shaving strategy.
To get your question on air, hit up YES Network through Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, using the hashtag #BKConnect.
In Milwaukee, the Brooklyn Nets look to steal a win from the Milwaukee Bucks and avoid tying them for the worst record in the Eastern Conference. Early, Brook Lopez made a statement, and that statement was in reverse one-handed Brookie Monster form. Lopez took Udoh baseline and threw down a man's jam in Udoh's face to give the Nets an early lead in the first quarter.
Bonus: listen to Donny Marshall get excited. He's got a great excited whoop.
Starting Lineup: Shaun Livingston, Alan Anderson, Joe Johnson, Kevin Garnett, Brook Lopez.
Injury Report: Deron Williams (ankle), Paul Pierce (hand), Andrei Kirilenko (back), and Jason Terry (knee) have all been ruled out.
When & Where: 8:30 P.M. EST, Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI
Watch: YES Network (Pregame at 8 P.M.)
Listen: CBS 880 AM
A scout from the Eastern Conference spoke with Marc Stein of ESPN, telling him the same thing Joe Johnson said after Thursday night's loss to the New York Knicks: the team lacks a real identity.
Here's the full transcript of what the scout told Stein:
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The Nets made colossal moves this summer expected to alter the Eastern Conference landscape, acquiring future Hall of Famers Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce from the Boston Celtics and transforming their lineup into a potential championship contender.
So far, that hasn't worked out.... MORE →
The Brooklyn Nets will be without Deron Williams (ankle), Paul Pierce (hand), Andrei Kirilenko (back), and Jason Terry (knee) once again for tonight's game against the Milwaukee Bucks, the team announced today.
Pierce and Williams were expected out -- Pierce will miss the next 1-3 weeks as he rehabilitates a broken bone in his hand, and Nets GM Billy King said Williams was hoping to be back Tuesday for the team's home game against the Boston Celtics. Williams hasn't played a full game with the Nets in nearly a month. Terry's earliest return date was tonight, but he'll be re-evaluated Monday. Kirilenko, fighting the worst back spasms of his career, currently has no timetable.
The Nets are reeling right now, which in some twisted way, may signify how important Williams is to the team's success.
The Brooklyn Nets travel tonight to Milwaukee to face the only team perhaps more broken than them in the Eastern Conference: the 4-15 Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks enter tonight with the league's worst offense, and their best player (Larry Sanders) sidelined after undergoing surgery on his right thumb. They're led instead by guard O.J. Mayo, who's averaging 14.9 points in 31.4 minutes per game on 41.3 percent shooting.
The Bucks are one of the league's worst teams at converting high-percentage shots. They're shooting 55.1 percent on shots in the restricted area, second-worst in the NBA, and have shot the second-fewest corner three-point attempts in the league. Mayo is front and center there: the team's leading scorer has shot a putrid 45.6 percent from within five feet, well below the league average.
But it's not the inside the Nets should worry about, particularly given their poor perimeter defense as of late. The Bucks have three rotation players (Khris Middleton, Mayo, Gary Neal) shooting over 40 percent from three-point range,
They also employ rookie Giannis Antetokounmpo, and his giant hands:
It's been a difficult road as of late for these Brooklyn Nets, who fell to 5-14 after a crushing 113-83 loss to their cross-borough rival New York Knicks in their home building. Chants of "Garnett Sucks!" and "Let's Go Knicks!" peppered throughout the building, and when PA announcer David Diamante implored the crowd to stand up, he was met with a chorus of boos from the split crowd.
The Knicks loss was the second straight for Brooklyn, their sixth straight at home, and their ninth in the last eleven games. They'll be without Deron Williams, Paul Pierce, Andrei Kirilenko, and Jason Terry once again. Their lineup is depleted, their offense lacks identity, and their defense is broken. The Nets are hurtling towards rock bottom faster than gravity allows.
But the Milwaukee Bucks, on the second half of a back-to-back following an overtime game, may be just the medicine for their struggles.
On the latest episode of #BKConnect, YES Network's Chris Shearn, Newsday's Rod Boone, and I discuss the team's third-quarter woes, whether or not Deron Williams will ever be fully healthy again, and break down the play of the month, Joe Johnson's game-winning floater in overtime against the Phoenix Suns.
The next episode of #BKConnect airs during tomorrow night's pregame show on YES Network at 8 P.M. To submit questions or comments, hit up YES Network on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, using the hashtag #BKConnect.
BROOKLYN, N.Y. -- Somewhat unprompted, Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd opened his press conference talking about the Knicks woes from outside, establishing to reporters that the team had a gameplan to beat the New York Knicks in the cross-bridge battle. Indeed, the Nets had a clear directive, one that they didn't shy from in the postgame. They wanted the Knicks, who entered the game shooting just 32 percent from three-point range (third-worst in the league), to beat them from outside.
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Following an embarrassing 113-83 loss at the hands of their cross-town rival New York Knicks, Brooklyn Nets shooting guard Joe Johnson admitted that the team has lacked a discernible offensive identity in their first 19 games.
"Offensively, we don't really have an identity," Johnson said. "We throw it down to Brook pretty much, and when there's nothing there, we put him in a lot of tough positions. We just basically sit and watch. So we make his job a lot harder than it should be. Without us doing a lot of movement and cutting, we make everybody's job hard."
Observers both casual and intensive alike have noticed the Nets struggle with off-ball movement this season, often standing around while the ballhandler tries to create a play for himself. Johnson cited the Nets dropping the ball down to Lopez, but they've traded possessions with a few players this season. Still, Nets players are rarely so forthcoming about the team's schematic issues as Johnson was following the team's blowout loss.
The team becomes particularly stagnant in the third quarter, when the Nets have been outscored by a league-worst 5.4 points per third. They also have the league's fewest third-quarter assists and have forced the fewest third-quarter turnovers. "Maybe early we'll have the movement, but second half, we don't have that movement," Johnson added. "We just don't have any chemistry at this point."
Johnson finished with 13 points, shooting 4-15 from the field and committing two turnovers. The loss dropped the Nets, who entered the season with hopes of winning a championship, to 5-14 on the season. Despite the rough start, Johnson still has hope.
"At the end of the day, it's basketball," Johnson continued. "It's not that hard. I think we're making it a lot more complicated than what it really is. It's on us as players to come out and play and work hard on what we're doing because regardless if we're getting beat by teams that are better than us, I'm sure they're not 25, 30 points better than us in our own building. So that's on us as players."
The team knows it needs to improve. Any other reasons?
"The East(ern Conference) is pretty bad," he added. "So our chances are still high."