In last night’s 91-90 loss, it was easy to see that the Nets were settling for jumpers against Orlando’s tough interior defense. But one fact you may not know is that the Nets actually only attempted 5 shots at the rim – and didn’t make one. That’s the lowest number of at-the-rim attempts in any game so far this season, and the Nets are also the only team to not make one shot at the rim in any single game. (Devin Harris’s late-game layup is probably he most notable of them all.) Now, it’s only fair to note that Brook Lopez & Devin Harris combined to get to the line 15 times – the only players to get to the free throw line for the Nets, mind you – so a few attempts were certainly lost there, but even so, the average in the NBA is 22.3 attempts per team per game. 5 is a joke of a number.
You could take this two ways. One could argue that despite this glaring weakness, they were still so diverse offensively and were able to find so many different ways to score that they managed only a one-point loss against a top-3 team in the Eastern Conference. Conversely, one could also say that the Nets just got extremely lucky last night, and if there’s a trend away from the rim, the Nets are going to go downhill fast. The truth likely lies somewhere in the middle.