Awesome win for the Nets today, and maybe the start of something different.
Tonight, the Nets didn’t play like their slow, old, stiff selves. They were quick and aggressive, forcing turnovers and running up and down the floor. They used every ounce of their athleticism to take down a young team.
The Nets took an early 11-4 lead in the first quarter that quickly dwindled down as Brooklyn’s sorry defense gave up a few shots. It looked as though we were headed towards a back-and-forth game as both teams were shooting effectively early on. But in the second quarter, the Nets ripped off a 17-4 run and never really looked back. Minnesota shot 47%, mostly due to poor defense by the Nets and unconscious shooting from the Wolves, but it didn’t matter. The Nets were simply a force on offense and were able to put this one away easily after halftime.
122 points ties the season high, while 98 points after three and 67 points after two sets a new season record.
22 PTS, 10-14 FG, 2-5 3P, 5 RBS, +22
Joe Johnson was absolutely on fire tonight. He was lights out from the floor, including an 11-point first quarter. Johnson continued his takeover in the second quarter when he realized that Andrew Wiggins is skinny and raw, and Johnson is a beast. A comeback game for him.
19 PTS, 8-17 FG, +20, 2 ST
Welcome home Thaddeus! His typical athletic self, flying all over the court. Unfortunately, he didn’t hit a three, which was his first game in 11 games without one. While the insertion of Young into the starting lineup has been hit or miss, his place was perfect today, and along with Johnson and Brook Lopez, was a scoring machine. This Nets team was uncharacteristically quick today, and Young was instrumental in that.
16 PTS, 8 RBS, +24, 7-8 FG
Another Nets player in double figures. Lopez was unstoppable in the post today, and also had one of his best rebounding days, with six offensive boards. Not a great day for him defensively, but these are the games we need to see out of him more often. A throwback to the days of him being one of the most effective scoring big men in the game.
2 PTS, 1-4 FG, 1 AST
Not his night. Couldn’t cover Kevin Martin and wasn’t really involved in the offense.
8 PTS, 3-9 FG, +24, 7 AST
Was on track for a double-double, but didn’t do anything to increase his stats after the third quarter. Williams had some nice shots to open the game, as well as some flashy passes – some which counted for assists, and others that didn’t. An okay game for him, with some nice moments sprinkled in.
16 PTS, 6-10 FG, -9, 5 RBS, 5 AST, 4 TO
Fine stats on paper, but I wasn’t in love with his shot selection tonight. Was also sloppy with the ball. But he probably would have stayed in over Markel Brown had the Nets not been up by so much. A good, not great day, for Jack.
6 PTS, 9 RBS, 2-2, -9
Somehow he was not the most athletic dude in a game where the athletic dudes set the tempo (we’ll get there in a second). But Plumlee had his moments grabbing rebounds, I guess.
21 PTS, 4 RBS, 10-15 FG, +7
GAME MVP. Bojan Bogdanovic was all over the place today, hitting long threes and scoring on fast breaks. Bogdanovic had a couple of real nice scores off turnovers and outlet passes. You don’t normally think of him as the most athletic guy on the floor, but his play set the pace for this up-tempo game the Nets found themselves in.