Nets look to even series after heartbreaking Game 1 loss: Gameday

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Nets Boston Celtics
Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (36) reacts after his three point basket against the Brooklyn Nets in the second half during game one of the first round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at TD Garden.
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Brooklyn Nets vs. Boston Celtics
Wednesday, April 20 @ TD Garden

How to Watch/Listen:

7:00 p.m. ET on My9, TNT, ESPN Radio and WFAN 101.9 FM / 660 AM.

Nets vs. Celtics Odds, Lines, More

Matchup:

The Nets will look to even the series up at one after a heartbreaking loss to the Boston Celtics in Game 1. It was Jayson Tatum who scored the game-winning bucket with the buzzer-beater to win the game.

Brooklyn will have to put that behind them if they want to return to Barclays Center with the series tied. It was the little mistakes that cost them in Game 1 that they will have to clean up for Game 2, which included 16 turnovers and being dominated on the glass during the 48-minute contest in Beantown.

Kevin Durant also struggled against the shutdown defense of the Celtics, who limited him to just 25 points on 9-for-24 shooting in the series opener. What the Nets do have going for them in Game 2 is Durant’s ability to recover after a sluggish game.

The Nets superstar has averaged 35.8 points in his first game after a loss since the 2019 playoffs, which means Durant will likely have a much better performance on Wednesday if history holds true.

“Just keep playing,” Durant said about his focus going into Game 2. “Bad games happen. Off-shooting nights happen. I felt like I was starting to get some rhythm there in the second half, so that is solid. We are just trying to look at it from playoff perspective trying to win the next game. I know what I did. I wish I had played better. We probably would have won the game. But I can’t let it get in the way too much.

“You want to look at the big picture, which is the series. It’s a thin line you are trying to cross when you want to focus the best you can but also realize it’s a team game. It’s good going through tough games. You try to evaluate and move on from them.”

Brooklyn will also need more out of Bruce Brown, who has been instrumental since the trade deadline but was largely limited during the first game. He was held to just five points in 37 minutes of work on Sunday.

Overall he was outplayed during the loss and Brooklyn will need more from him in Game 2.

“We gotta clean a lot of things up,” Brown said. “They didn’t play extremely well also, so we watched film today, There are things we gotta fix and we’ll do that tomorrow.”

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Nets Notables

This is the fourth time the Nets and Celtics have met in the playoffs. Brooklyn was the higher seed in the first three matchups. They hold a 12-4 playoff record against the Celtics (7-1 at home and 5-3 on the road), with the .750 win % marking their highest vs. any opponent in the postseason. … Since the NBA Playoffs expanded to eight teams in each conference (1984), five #7 seeds have earned a playoff series win. The last #7 seed to beat a #2 seed was the 2010 Spurs, who were then swept in the next round, 4-0, by the #3 seed Phoenix Suns. The Suns featured Nets head coach Steve Nash, Nets guard Goran Dragić and Nets player development assistant Amar’e Stoudemire. … This is the Nets’ seventh playoff appearance in the last 10 seasons (since moving to Brooklyn in 2012-13), tying the most playoff appearances in a 10-year period in Nets history (previously: seven playoff appearances in a 10-season stretch from 1998-2007).

Injury Report

Nets: Ben Simmons (return to competition reconditioning/back soreness) and Joe Harris (left ankle surgery) are out.

Celtics: Robert Williams (left knee meniscal tear) is out.

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