Opponent: New Orleans Pelicans
Time: 8:00PM EST
Location: Smoothie King Center
Watch: YES Network/FOX Sports Go
Listen: WFAN 101.9 660 AM
The Brooklyn Nets will look to end their 11-game losing streak as they travel to New Orleans for a Friday night showdown against the Pelicans. Of course, the year of 2017 has not been kind to the Nets thus far — not only are they winless, but they’ve been outscored by an average of 13.8 points. In their most recent contest against the Toronto Raptors, the Nets kept the status quo alive after playing hard-nosed basketball for three quarters before it unraveled in an all too familiar fashion on the way to losing by 19 points. The Nets could not stop the Toronto backcourt, even with Kyle Lowery resting, as Corey Joseph and DeMar DeRozan combined for 69 points. The Nets were led by Brook Lopez, who once again performed admirably following a game he sat for rest, dropping 28 points and grabbing 8 rebounds.
It’s been a whole eight days since the last time these two teams matched up and the Nets will be looking for retribution following a 104-95 loss. The Pelicans were without All-Star Anthony Davis and the Nets took advantage by scoring 50 points in the paint, but it was all for naught. The visitors would finish the game on a 13-1 run, capping off a fourth quarter in which they outscored Brooklyn 31-16. Making up for Davis’ absence, Tyreke Evans sliced through the Nets’ defense and scored a season-high 29 points, while Terence Jones not only hit the dagger but would notch 24 points and grab 12 rebounds to go along with it.
The Nets will not be as lucky tonight as Davis has returned from his minor injury and was a big factor in the Pelicans’ 118-98 win over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday, in which he posted a stat line of 21 points and 14 rebounds.
3 Things to Watch for in Nets-Pelicans:
1. Quincy Acy signed to 2nd 10-day contract
It will be interesting to see if Quincy Acy, now signed to his second 10-day contract, will have more meaningful minutes for Kenny Atkinson’s squad. Thus far, Acy has averaged 6.3 points and 2 rebounds over four games, so expectations will remain tempered until he’s unleashed earlier than garbage time. No Nets big off the bench has stood out and earned steady minutes this season, so why not experiment and see what value Acy can bring against Davis and company, right?
Speaking of which…
2. Containing Anthony Davis
If Brooklyn hopes to end their losing skid, containing Davis is a must. This will be a challenge as Davis has averaged 28.8 points, 12.1 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game in another studded season for the youngster. Yesterday, he was named the starting forward for the Western Conference All-Stars — so, uh, godspeed, Brook Lopez.
3. Will Nets continue to hoist up three-pointers?
Despite a recent slump, the Nets have not let poor three-point shooting impact their willingness to continue shooting the deep ball. Following a 7-26 performance from three-point land against the Raptors, the Nets might be wise to pivot the game plan considering their success against the Pelicans in the paint last week, albeit without Davis protecting the rim.