Nets Drop Second Straight in Overtime Loss to Grizzlies


Final: 12/28/2020

L 111 116

With Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Spencer Dinwiddie ruled out of Monday’s game, the Nets had an opportunity to revert to their “bubble” ways.

Caris LeVert’s 28-point, 11-assist performance gave the Nets a chance, but Brooklyn was outlasted 116-111 in overtime by the Grizzlies at home. Brooklyn had chances to win it, but fatigue showed as Caris LeVert’s three-pointer fell short at the end of regulation and Joe Harris missed a late shot in overtime. 

A starting lineup constructed of LeVert, Harris, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Taurean Prince and DeAndre Jordan–with Durant and Irving resting–did not show immediate dividends, with Memphis pouncing to an early 12-point lead. Many of the trends from Sunday’s game seemed to continue, with the Grizzlies attacking the paint and the Nets giving away opportunities.

What differed from Sunday, though, was Brooklyn finding sparks throughout its lineup to counter Memphis’ punches. The Nets set the tone with their second-quarter performance, where they rode the hot hand of TLC and out-scored Memphis 32-22. 

Memphis threatened to overtake the momentum a few times throughout the night, but what spared the Nets was their ability to make the Grizzlies pay for their mistakes. Brooklyn turned the ball over 17 times, an ongoing issue, but ended up scoring 26 points off Memphis’ 19 turnovers.

What stood out was Brooklyn’s ball movement. Led by LeVert, the Nets assisted on 18 of their first 20 field goals and went on to notch 28 total. 

LeVert awakened in the second half, recording the fourth 20-10 game of his career while adding five steals. He was one of three players who stepped in as starters against Memphis, alongside TLC and Prince (who left much to be desired after a poor offensive start). 

Additionally, what boosted Brooklyn down the stretch was its bench. Chris Chiozza dazzled, so much so that he earned a spot in the Nets’ crunch time rotation. His shooting touch and energy to get into the paint gave Brooklyn a needed weapon down the stretch.

The Nets again allowed big production inside, with the Grizzlies recording 56 points in the paint and out-rebounding Brooklyn 67-57. Jarrett Allen was productive on the offensive glass yet again, grabbing five offensive boards and 15 total. 

The Grizzlies were powered by Kyle Anderson (28 points) and Dillon Brooks (24), while Jonas Valanciunas added 14 points and 14 rebounds. Ja Morant left the game in the second quarter in great pain with a sprained ankle (best wishes for a speedy recovery). 

Brooklyn showed grit without Irving and Durant–who provided energy on the bench–but the team’s offense turned cold in overtime, going 2-of-10 from the field and turning the ball over four times. The Nets now fall to 2-2 on the season. 

Next up: A meeting against the Hawks on Wednesday. LeVert played well as the primary ball-handler against the Grizzlies, and now he will likely move to the starting lineup alongside Irving and Durant in Spencer Dinwiddie’s stead. 

The Nets’ depth will continue to be put to the test. 

Caris LeVert


The stats: 28 PTS, 12-29 FG, 2-9 3PM, 2-2 FT, 4 REB, 11 AST, 5 STL, 3 TO, 38 MIN

Caris LeVert had a lot on his plate with the absences of KD, Kyrie and Spencer, but he stepped up in the spotlight. 

It was not his best shooting night, and he missed a potential game-winner, but much of the Nets’ success was spurred by LeVert’s ball handling. A slow first half from LeVert offensively turned into a big second half and overtime, where he scored 20 points. 

Much like his teammates, LeVert looked tired by the end, but he still gave the Nets life to pull away with a win. It was a similar role for LeVert as he held in the bubble, and he will now likely find a new one in the starting lineup without Dinwiddie.

Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot


The stats: 21 PTS, 7-17 FG, 3-10 3PM, 4-4 FT, 6 REB, 2 AST, 1 BLK, 4 TO, 40 MIN

TLC lost his offensive edge in the fourth quarter and overtime, but his early production gave the Nets the boost they needed to get back into the game.

After a big fourth quarter on Sunday, TLC picked up where he left off and gave Brooklyn important minutes against Memphis. He provided variety in his scoring after his three-point shot stopped falling and added a rebounding presence.

The Nets could have used some TLC magic down the stretch again, but he fell cold and caused some turnovers. Still, he is proving to be a viable option for Brooklyn off the bench going forward.

Joe Harris


The stats: 14 PTS, 5-13 FG, 2-4 3PM, 2-2 FT, 8 REB, 3 AST, 1 STL, 42 MIN

Joe Harris played the most minutes out of Brooklyn’s lineup, and it showed when he missed an opportunity to pull ahead near the end of overtime. That does not take away from the energy he provided early and often with his off- and on-ball movement.

It would have been good to see Joe get some more looks from three throughout the game, but he still made his presence known on the offensive boards, tallying 5 (!). The second chances were big for Brooklyn, and Joe always shows his value beyond the three-point line when the situation is right. 

And he earned his first-ever NBA technical for his reaction to a non-call. A big night for Joe. 

Chris Chiozza


The stats: 14 PTS, 5-14 FG, 3-8 3PM, 1-2 FT, 1 REB, 4 AST, 3 TO, 27 MIN

Chris Chiozza was a regular part of Brooklyn’s rotation in the absence of Kyrie and Spencer, and he stepped up offensively when the Nets needed it late. 

Chiozza had his high moments–and Ian Eagle was on top of his “Cheeze”-isms game–but he still left some more to be desired down the stretch. The guard gave the Nets some fresh legs and energy, but perhaps he was not the best choice to get opportunities in overtime with his giveaways and mounting missed shots. 

Jarrett Allen


The stats: 8 PTS, 3-6 FG, 2-3 FT, 15 REB, 2 TO, 22 MIN

Mid-range Jarrett? Mid-range Jarrett!

The Fro showed confidence in expanding his offensive contributions on Monday, draining a mid-range shot twice. Allen also added five offensive rebounds, a continuation of his recent production.

The Nets could use more from Allen offensively, but he has been one of the team’s most reliable pieces in the young season. Allen had a tough matchup against Valanciunas, but DeAndre Jordan helped keep the big man at bay.

Defending teams in the paint continues to be an issue for Brooklyn, but Allen has been increasingly productive in contesting and cleaning up the glass. Still, there is room to grow.