Nets Lock Up No. 7 Seed with Wire-to-Wire Victory Over Clippers


Final: 08/09/2020

W 129 120

The Nets may be having the most fun out of any team in the NBA bubble. 

With its offense ablaze, Brooklyn built on a 45-point first quarter with a 129-120 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday. With the win, the Nets have officially clinched the No. 7 seed in the East, a feat that was in question with the team’s depleted roster. 

The Nets continue to prove that they have the right weapons at the right time. That was no different against the Clippers, where Joe Harris and Caris LeVert came barreling out of the gate. 

Harris quickly scored Brooklyn’s first five points and continued that pace to put up the best half of his career, using his versatility to score 23 points in 13 minutes. LeVert was equally absurd, who had 17 points and seven assists in the first quarter alone. 

When a shot went up from the Nets’ hands in the first quarter, it was a shock if it did not go in. Brooklyn put up 26 points in the first six minutes and went on to put up 45 points in the frame on 85.7% shooting. That includes 8-of-10 shooting from three (they went 8-of-32 from three against the Celtics on Wednesday, for reference).

The Nets held a 21-point lead after the fiery first quarter, their largest advantage of the game, but the Clippers answered with various runs throughout the night. LA out-scored Brooklyn 39-29 in the second quarter and tied the game in a blink of an eye as Kawhi Leonard went on an 11-0 run to begin the third quarter. 

None of the Clippers’ runs were enough to phase Brooklyn, though, as the Nets never conceded the lead–something no other team has accomplished this season. Efficient ball movement allowed the Nets to maintain their competitive edge, recording 32 assists on 47 field goals. 

Brooklyn’s offense cooled down in the third quarter, but the bench helped pad the lead in the fourth. Tyler Johnson made a deep three as the final dagger in the Nets’ impressive night. Leonard finished with 39 points, but a Clippers team lacking Paul George did not have enough firepower to finish on top.

The Nets were powered by their second-highest field goal percentage of the season, scoring at a 55.3% clip. The team also went 20-of-43 from three-point range, the second time in the bubble it recorded at least 20 shots from deep. 

With two seeding games left before the playoffs, the Nets are locked in at the No. 7 seed with a 4-2 record–including victories against the Bucks and Clippers. Those wins carry weight for a Nets team that needed to show progress and gain experience throughout bubble play. 

Jacque Vaughn’s efforts are to be applauded, as he continues to make smart moves and get the most out of his roster. The resiliency of the bamboo plant is starting to shine through.

Next up: Another matchup against the Magic awaits. Brooklyn will have a chance for some revenge after opening bubble play with a loss to Orlando. Seeding will not be up for grabs, but redemption will be. 

As Ian Eagle said during the broadcast, this is bubble madness! The Nets are having fun–and why not? They are built to surprise, and they are making other teams do a double-take. Just as it was meant to be. 

Caris LeVert


The stats: 27 PTS, 10-17 FG, 2-5 3FG, 5-8 FT, 4 REB, 13 AST, 3 TO, 1 STL, 35 MIN

Caris LeVert was clearly on a mission to lock up the No. 7 seed on Sunday. 

LeVert was scoring at will in the first quarter and went on to put up just the fourth points/assists double-double of his career, including a career-high in assists. His court vision, capped off by Johnson’s final dagger, connecting with his teammates both in the front and backcourt. 

It is always fun watch LeVert do his thing, and a 17-point, seven-assist performance in the first quarter was just the beginning. By taking care of the ball and keeping up his aggression, LeVert is continuing to show his star power in the bubble. 

Joe Harris


The stats: 25 PTS, 10-16 FG, 5-8 3FG, 2 REB, 1 AST, 3 TO, 27 MIN

Joe Harris wishes he could bottle up that first half forever. 

Harris put up the best half of his career, scoring 23 points in 13 minutes (including five three-pointers). He scored just two points for the rest of the game, but his impact on the first half was a statement-maker. 

With his performance against the Clippers, Harris is continuing to show that he can be a lethal weapon come the postseason. If he stays on his three-point shooting streak, the Nets can feel confident that they at least have a chance to win every game going forward. He is that important. 

Tyler Johnson


The stats: 21 PTS, 6-11 FG, 5-9 3FG, 4-4 FT, 4 REB, 1 AST, 1 TO, 30 MIN

Tyler Johnson makes things happen. 

Brooklyn’s bench had a slow start against the Clippers, but Johnson changed that with his red-hot three-point shooting and aggression on the court. His DEEP three-pointer at the end of the game was the dagger on the Clippers’ hopes for a comeback. 

Johnson scored 13 of his career-high 21 points in the fourth quarter, and he seems to just be getting better by the game. Double figures from Johnson is great news for the Nets, and he has had no shortage of them so far in the restart. 

Garrett Temple


The stats: 19 PTS, 6-14 FG, 4-11 3FG, 3-3 FT, 6 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 37 MIN

Garrett Temple was not the loudest Net on the floor, but he had some well-timed shots that helped Brooklyn counter any threats from the Clippers. Particularly, two of his threes came after Leonard’s 11-0 run to start the third quarter, keeping LA at bay from making a larger run. 

Temple may not score 19 points every night, but he was available for Brooklyn when it counted on Sunday. He could have been more efficient from three, but without his timing and effort on the boards, the Nets could be in a different position. 

Jarrett Allen


The stats: 16 PTS, 7-9 FG, 2-3 FT, 16 REB, 4 AST, 2 TO, 1 STL, 2 BLK, 38 MIN

LeVert and Harris headline Brooklyn’s effort, but Jarrett Allen was sneaky himself with a 16-point, 16-rebound, four-assist stat line to go along with two blocks. 

Allen has been on top of his game, following up his near triple-double on Friday with another standout performance. His finishes near the rim are valuable in each Nets run, and his blocks were on display against the Clippers. 

Yes, Allen is a starting-caliber center, for those who are late to the party. As his connection with LeVert and his teammates grows, it seems as if he is just getting started.