It hasn’t been pretty for the Brooklyn Nets (8-12), who have lost the last three games by a combined 70 points, albeit against the East’s top tier. So tonight could be a bit of a respite against the last-place Philadelphia 76ers (2-19).
Lionel Hollins may get Joe Johnson (illness) and Mirza Teletovic (hip pointer) back in the lineup tonight, which could result in the Nets’ fifth different lineup in as many games. But they’ll still be without Brook Lopez (lower back strain).
Nets general manager Billy King, while rumored to be in more significant trade talks, did make two minor moves yesterday, acquiring forward Brandon Davies from these 76ers for a package including Andrei Kirilenko and Jorge Gutierrez, and signing free agent guard Darius Morris. This season, Davies has appeared in 20 games (six starts), averaging 6.3 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 19.0 minutes per game.
Sixers’ coach Brett Brown was not pleased with the idea of losing Davies as he said after Thursday’s practice, “When you start losing people that you are very fond of and have tremendous respect for … there is a human side of it that bothers me because you are trying to grow chemistry, you are trying to grow a culture.”
But now Davies faces his former team, already. The Nets beat the 76ers 99-91 on November 26, despite relinquishing a 20-point first half lead and committing a season-high 24 turnovers. Tony Wroten (18 points, 11 assists) and K.J. McDaniels (18 points, 6 rebounds) made the Nets defense look slow at times, using their quickness and athleticism to tally numerous easy buckets.
Kevin Garnett, who notched steal number 1,800 for his career on Wednesday, stands alone as the only player in NBA history to notch 25,000 points, 10,000 rebounds, 5,000 assists, 2,000 blocks and 1,800 steals. Garnett is listed as questionable to play with a sore left foot, after x-rays on the foot came back negative Wednesday night. If he’s availablem Hollins could stagger the future Hall-of-Famer’s minutes looking ahead to the game in Charlotte tomorrow night, as he has done in previous games this season. Jerome Jordan has done well the past two games with extra playing time, averaging 11 points on 60 percent shooting. The Nets are 2-1 in first games of back-to-backs this season.
A few things to watch for tonight:
- Deron Williams needs just four assists to tie Vince Carter for fourth in franchise history.
- Joe Johnson needs to make two 3-pointers to tie Keith Van Horn for sixth in Nets history with 335 threes.
Tipoff at Barclays Center at 7:30 P.M.