Check out the advanced
carnage box score from last night’s 105-93 Brooklyn Nets loss to the Atlanta Hawks here.
A few final thoughts on this game:
- After the game, Deron Williams said that the Hawks did a lot of things in the pick-and-roll in that fourth quarter that led to the Nets’ demise, but I’m not entirely sure that’s true. Looking over the possessions again, there are three themes: the Hawks making crazy shots (Al Horford’s flip as he fell to the ground, Josh Smith hitting a three), the Hawks taking care of business in the post (Ivan Johnson flying past Mirza Teletovic, Al Horford doing what he does best), and the biggest one, buckets in transition. With the Nets going towards the rim and not enough retreating, the more athletic Hawks pushed the ball upon the instant they corralled a rebound, and the Nets just couldn’t keep up.
- Another major fault: allowing the Hawks to score five — yes, five — and-ones with touch fouls in that fourth quarter. Josh Smith (twice), Al Horford, Dahntay Jones, and Ivan Johnson each got in on the fun, and it wasn’t like they scored through difficult contact — Horford’s was a circus shot, but the other four were just layups. You can either give a hard (non-injurious) foul to prevent the basket, or you get out of the way. The Nets did neither; Blatche slapped at Johnson’s chest, Lopez put his hands on Jones’s back, Watson… okay, Watson didn’t touch Smith, so that was a bad call, but the point stands.
- I harped on this a bit last night, but in the best game of his season, it seemed odd that Nets interim head coach P.J. Carlesimo sat Reggie Evans — in the midst of a 14-point, 21-rebound night heading into the fourth quarter — for the first seven minutes as the Nets’ chances evaporated. I won’t argue that Evans played well when he did get in — he got burned in a few pick-and-roll situations and didn’t get another garbage-man shot attempt — but watching Teletovic, Lopez, and Blatche get burned because of lethargy isn’t better than watching Evans overplay the pick-and-roll scheme.
- Gerald Wallace’s inability to make a layup is the staggering storyline of his season. For all we talk about Deron Williams’s resurgence since the All-Star break, maybe Wallace needs some PRP: since the break, Wallace is shooting 29.3% from the field, 15.4% on three-pointers, and 24-64 (37.5%) on layups & dunks. Wallace was 1-7 on layups Sunday night. That’s 12 potential points left unscored. The Nets lost by 12.
- Another way to look at it: Wallace’s shot chart. Look specifically at the shots from inside the arc.
This hurts. This is bad. If the object of basketball was to perform an aggregate of everything that wasn’t scoring, Wallace would be this team’s best player. But his inability to score is frightening, and his inability to score even on the highest-percentage shots available is nothing short of maddening.