Nets lose heartbreaker to Warriors: 3 Takeaways

Brooklyn Nets
Kyrie Irving throws a pass downcourt against the Golden State Warriors in the third quarter at the Chase Center.
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The Nets dropped their fourth straight game on Saturday in a 110-106 loss to the Golden State Warriors. Brooklyn is 6-11 in their last 17 games and they have fallen to the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference.

The game was tied 93-93 with 6:11 left until Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, who were quiet for most of the night, got hot.  Thompson hit a fadeaway shot with twelve seconds left to give the Warriors a four-point lead until Kyrie Irving cut the lead to one with a huge three on the right-wing with nine seconds remaining. Some questionable calls at the end allowed the Warriors to make free throws and close out the victory.

Patty Mills contributed 24 points on 6-of-12 shooting from three. Kessler Edwards played tremendous defense on Curry all night, holding him to two points on 1-of-7 shooting in the first half. Kyrie Irving was outstanding, scoring 32 points while adding 7 assists and 7 rebounds.

The Brooklyn Nets night started and ended with unfortunate news. A little more than an hour and a half before tip-off it was announced that James Harden has been dealing with a right-hand injury and was questionable to play Saturday night against the Warriors. The Nets ultimately kept him out of the game, leaving just Irving on the court as the lone “Big 3” member for Brooklyn.

“Harden’s been dealing with some discomfort in the hand for a few days- it felt worse this morning. Harden got an MRI on the hand that came back clean, but there is some irritation in there,” Nash said.

Should Nash Have Challenged the foul?

The talk amongst Nets Twitter is that Steve Nash absolutely should have challenged the inbounds foul call on Kyrie Irving, that allowed the Warriors to get Curry a free throw and the ball. Golden State extended to a 4 point lead with six seconds left. With one timeout left the situation was tricky, should he have lost the challenge the Nets would not be able to advance the ball (no timeouts left).

“I felt I was in legal guarding position on the non-challenge call play,” Irving said of the situation.

Nash said that “a little bird” told him not to challenge and that the officials told him it was 100% a foul. Irving did add later that he wasn’t surprised the play was called a foul and that he wasn’t upset that Nash didn’t challenge the call.

Kyrie Irving was the best player on the court

It’s safe to say Irving was the best player on the court all night, willing the Nets back into the game in the third quarter. Down by 22, Irving scored fourteen points and fueled a 20-4 run to close the period and pull Brooklyn within two points of Golden State.

Irving also hit the clutch shot on the right-wing to cut the lead to one and give the Nets a chance. Being double-teamed and blitzed a majority of the night, Irving continued to make the correct basketball plays and finished the game with 32 points, 7 assists, 7 rebounds, and was a +5. NBA analyst Mark Jackson said during the broadcast, “there should have been a camera following Kyrie when he wasn’t around the team. No way he was just chillin at home.”

The Brooklyn Nets are cursed

Already being without Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Joe Harris, the Nets cannot afford to lose any more players. Unfortunately, LaMarcus Aldridge rolled his ankle in the second half and was unable to return. Aldridge was tremendous all night and the Nets ran the offense through him in the low post when Irving was out of the game. He finished the night with 9 points, 2 blocks, on 4-for-10 shooting, and was a +7 in fifteen minutes. Nash was unable to give an update on Aldridge, but he did leave the arena on crutches.