Just a quick thing about Brook Lopez. People have been criticizing him for his poor play both games against Orlando, and that is fine. But for anyone saying this proves that he won’t be an elite big man (and there are some people saying that), let’s take a deep breath. Dwight Howard makes most big men look like Brook did last night, he has a combination of strength that isn’t often seen, and he knows how to use it. Also, Brook Lopez is only 21, in his second season, and he is getting the attention of every team right now with all of the injuries. If you want to criticize him for a poor game, that’s fine, but its just a game, not a trend. With all that being said, Sean Williams looked great last night, and if he can produce while getting the backup C minutes, that allows for Boone to be Yi’s backup full time (and start when he is out). I like that rotation.
Another tough game for the Nets and they will once again face a tough team with a great SG. Dwyane Wade is playing some good basketball now, and he is adding a nice shot from the outside to is repertoire. A very scary player.
Nets Projected Starting Lineup
- PG – Rafer Alston
- SG – Trenton Hassell
- SF – Bobby Simmons
- PF – Eduardo Najera
- C – Brook Lopez
Magic Projected Starting Lineup
- PG – Mario Chalmers
- SG – Dwyane Wade
- SF – Quentin Richardson
- PF – Michael Beasly
- C – Jermaine O’Neal
Dwyane Wade vs. Trenton Hassell - Trenton Hassell did a pretty good job on Vince Carter last night, and tonight will be even tougher. Vince Carter likes settling for those outside jumper, Dwyane Wade on the other hand, he will drive, and once you go to stop that, then he will shoot from the outside.
Brook Lopez vs. Jermaine O’Neal – I am going to be honest, I don’t know how well O’Neal is playing this year, but he was awful, just plain awful, last year. Maybe he was hurt, but he just looked lost on the defensive end. Let’s see if Brook can have a nice bounce-back game.
Matchup Of The Night
Rafer Alston vs. Mario Chalmers - The sage veteran vs. the young rookie. Vague, I know, but I couldn’t come up with anything else.
Keys To Victory
Don’t Let Wade Get Hot – When he is “on,” there is nobody who can stop him. So you don’t want to see him start hitting from the outside, because if he does, it will be a long night.
Limit Turnovers – When you limit turnovers it does two things. It gives you more opportunities to score, and it prevents the other team from getting easy baskets. Both are very important to the Nets. As they continue to struggle to score, they need as many chances at the hoop as they can get. Also, they have been playing very well defensively, so you don’t want to give teams easy buckets. You want them to try to score on your half-court defense.
Current Prediction Record: 5-4