Hornets blow out Nets to gain edge in playoff race

Just outrageously open (AP)
Just outrageously open (AP)
Just outrageously open (AP)

What happened: After upsetting Golden State for the best win of the year, the Nets hosted the Charlotte Hornets in a game that had some playoff implications. The Nets and the Hornets were tied for the eighth seed, so you’d think Brooklyn, hoping to build off last night’s win, would come out with some fire. Yeah, they didn’t.

Where they stand: The Nets are now 25-34, good for 10th in the East. They are a game behind Charlotte for the eighth seed and a half game behind Indiana for the ninth.

That was…: Words I can’t say on a YES Network affiliated blog. The Nets played really, really, really terrible basketball. They couldn’t score, they couldn’t defend, they turned the ball over. I’ll give you two numbers: 18 and 25. The first is their three-point percentage and the second is how many points they were down at one point in the first quarter.

Marvin Williams and Al Jefferson each unleashed for 10 points in the first quarter, while the Nets shot the ball…not well.

Yeah, in order to win games, the key is to make more baskets than the other team.

Game grades: Read ‘em here.

Ya gotta hold onto the ball: Yes, the Nets only had nine recorded turnovers, but it just felt like every possession — especially in the third — ended in some sort of sloppy ball movement. Shots were banking off the glass, passes were intercepted, rebounds were fumbled. The team was all out of sorts tonight, and Charlotte took advantage.

Joe at the four: Joe Johnson started the evening at the four again, and was subsequently lit up by Marvin Williams. Williams finished with 18 points to Johnson’s two. When Thad Young got the start in the second half, Joe went back to the three, where he was subsequently lit up by Gerald Henderson and and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Not the best night for him.

Yeah, but how about Thad Young?: That guy can ball. Read Zach Fisch’s first post for TBG about Thad here, but he’s been a revelation for the Nets so far. Things are just different with him on the floor. The team is more athletic and versatile, and his strengths seem to be everyone else’s weaknesses. Thad was the only Net who had a consistent shot, and he picked up three steals. Solid effort from him tonight.

Can you share block credit?: A half a block each for Brook and Thad?

I miss KG: At least when the he was on the team, the Nets were funny.

Now, it’s just…

Next up: Friday, Brooklyn will host Eric Bledsoe and the 32-30 Phoenix Suns at 8:00. The Nets lost their only matchup to the Suns this season back in November to a final of 112-104.