After the Brooklyn Nets downed the Dallas Mavericks 113-96, led by Brook Lopez's 38 points and 11 rebounds, Brook Lopez earned the coveted "lean down to try to hear what YES Network sideline reporter Sarah Kustok is asking after the game" award. Vince Carter, recognizing Lopez's greatness, couldn't let him make it easy. Watch:

 

Since Devin handed me the keys to the TBG car today, you all had to expect a Ginocchio trademark “rant” after tonight’s game. In other words if you came here for more intellectual statistical analysis, you’re going to be disappointed.

For one, it’s difficult to be too intellectual over another Brooklyn Nets loss that resembles so many others than preceded it. Another third quarter collapse that saw a struggling Mavericks team that’s more or less playing out the rest of its season right now open up a 20 point lead against the Nets. A stagnant offense that produced 19 turnovers, including an unsightly 7 from Deron Williams. And another set of random rotations from head coach PJ Carlesimo (though it’s hard to kill the coach when the entire team takes the third quarter off).
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Stephon Marbury, New York Knicks, Jason Kidd, New Jersey Nets

Stephon Marbury & Jason Kidd... Two players who have seen both sides. (AP/Bill Kostroun)

In whatever superlative you'd like to assign it -- the Battle for New York, Battle of the Boroughs, the Nets' arrival on the New York stage, or just another game -- the ex-New Jersey/now Brooklyn Nets take on the New York Knicks tonight, in Barclays Center in Brooklyn. This game has added meaning like few Nets-Knicks games have had before, but these two have had an up-and-down rivalry since the Nets joined the NBA in 1976.

Let's take a look through the history of the Nets-Knicks rivalry: from its origin, through the decades and playoff matchups, through the players that have seen both sides, and finally to today: the "Blueprint for Greatness" era.

The origin story
The 1980s: Waves of excellence in a sea of obscurity
1983: The first playoff battle ends in defeat
The 90s: what could have been
Playoffs: '94's and Heartbreak

The Nets take center stage
Nets sweep at last

The Blueprint for Greatness

The origin story

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