Deja Vu: Nets fail to execute, fall to Indiana 104-97


Final: 12/18/2015

L 97 104

The Brooklyn Nets 2015-2016 Mad-Lib 

Tonight, the Brooklyn Nets _____ (lost/fell/crumbled) in dramatic fashion against the Indiana Pacers. After a _____ (lackluster/brutal/poor) first half, Paul George was ultimately too much for the Eastern Conference cellar-dwellers. The Nets just couldn’t get their _____ (offense/defense/anything) going and struggled to keep up with the swift passing from George Hill and Monta Eliis. More specifically, on offense, the Nets’ _____ (ball movement/three-point shooting/finishing near the rim) truly cost them the opportunity to hang with a good basketball team.

It seems repetitive, but if the Nets want to turn their season around, they’ll need more from _____ (Joe Johnson/Bojan Bogdanovic/Wayne Ellington) as he finished 2-7 from the field. Unfortunately, the Nets really struggled on the _____ (offensive boards/defensive boards/transition defense end) as the Pacers’ 14 offensive rebounds came easier than usual and lead to plenty of second-chance points.

For a team with a _____ (hopeless/devoid/desolate) immediate future, the Nets only have simple fourth quarter execution to look forward to — and yet, it’s been one of their most massive disappointments this season somehow. Whether it’s the lack of fouling against the Miami Heat on Wednesday or their fundamental breakdowns tonight versus the Pacers, the Nets have left a ton to be desired down the stretch.

With the _____ (Minnesota Timberwolves/Chicago Bulls/almost any other team) on the horizon, the Nets will look back on tonight’s game as one that they _____ (should’ve/could’ve/would’ve) won, but the usual inner-demons reared their heads once again.

Go on, I’m waiting — tell me you can’t apply that simple fill-in-the-blank formula for most of the Brooklyn Nets’ efforts so far this year.

It’s painful, but it’s just so predictable at this point.

When you’re struggling to contain the fearsome trio of Ian Mahinmi (10 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists), Rodney Stuckey (15 points, 7 rebounds), and Jordan Hill (14 points, 11 rebounds) then you’re obviously going to have some overarching issues to deal with. But, even if those points had gone to George, C.J. Miles, or Monta Ellis (who scored just 2 points on 1-7 shooting), the Nets simply did not execute in another fourth quarter.

The Nets generally operated under control, but in the fourth quarter, the wheels feel off spectacularly to the tune of five turnovers. And as the ball skipped away from outstretched hands or launched two rows deep on very basic instances of miscommunication, it felt right, it felt like home.

For a game so winnable, so strangely within striking distance all night, it was still tough to imagine this game ending any other way.

Brook Lopez


The stats: 18 PTS, 7-15 FG%, 5 RBS, 1 AST, 2 TOs

Brook Lopez scored four points in the second half.

Surely, this blame doesn’t totally fall on Lopez’s shoulders, but it somehow becomes more mysterious each time it happens. After Lopez got back to his scoring ways against Miami, the Nets seemed disinterested in feeding their franchise’s best player throughout the second half. Oddly enough, Lopez’s low 4th quarter attempts have been a problem for Brooklyn all season — and yet, here we are again.

Why? Who knows, but it absolutely must stop if the Nets have any hope of salvaging this season.