Nets Show Signs of Life in Second Scrimmage


Final: 07/25/2020

W 124 119

The Brooklyn Nets bounced back from being thoroughly thrashed on Wednesday with an improved performance as they overcame the San Antonio Spurs, 124-119.

The NBA’s restart of the season is still only in the scrimmage stage, but fans have been starved of basketball for months and the hot-take machines are already running at full capacity. While Brooklyn may have been blown-out against the New Orleans Pelicans earlier in the week, they looked like a completely different squad on Saturday.

The phrase “shaking off the rust” may have been said a hundred times already, but there is definitely some truth to the idea that it takes time to get back in a basketball rhythm both as a player and a team. The team massively improved on all aspects of their game, but it was especially prominent on the offensive end.

The addition of Joe Harris and his shooting provided much-needed space for Caris LeVert to operate, and he took advantage of it. He may have led the team offensively, but it was a team effort with various individuals putting in impressive performances. Ultimately, increased energy and improved execution across the roster helped the Nets walk away victorious, and their fans can now hopefully breathe a small sigh of relief before the final scrimmage.

Joe Harris


The stats: 12 PTS, 4-9 FG, 2-5 3PT, 2-2 FT, 2 REB, 1 AST, 2 BLK, 2 TO, 22 MIN

Joe Harris didn’t miss a step in his return to play.

His hair is longer and his skin is tanned from a summer spent outside, but his shot remains unchanged. Harris is arguably the most consistent member of the team, and even though this was his first game back, his impact on the overall play was immediate. The “rust” made itself evident through his five fouls in only 22 minutes, but that’s a price the Nets are more than willing to pay.

Caris LeVert


The stats: 27 PTS, 8-17 FG, 3-9 3PT, 8-9 FT, 2 REB, 3 AST, 3 STL, 3 TO, 23 MIN

Caris LeVert undeniably has a lot of pressure on him in Orlando, and he embraced that against the Spurs.

The first scrimmage might have brought out the critics, but the second decisively shut them down. LeVert rose to the challenge and put on a show with the ball in his hands. He may have not scored a boatload of points, but the manner in which he scored them was tremendous. He displayed a wealth of tools and tricks that would put Batman’s utility belt to shame.

Rodions Kurucs


The stats: 17 PTS, 5-7 FG, 3-3 3PT, 4-6 FT, 4 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 2 TO, 24 MIN

Rodions Kurucs is looking reeeeeeeal comfortable to begin the restart.

Kurucs is the definition of a momentum player. Within his first two minutes in a game it is easy to tell if it will be an “Oh my GOSH Rodi!” or an “Oh my gosh, Rodi…” type of performance. His hot start in Orlando should be a confidence-boost that could prove a vital boon for this depleted roster.

Jarrett Allen


The stats: 10 PTS, 4-5 FG, 2-4 FT, 11 REB, 2 AST, 2 STL, 0 TO, 23 MIN

Jarrett Allen posted his second double-double in as many games.

The No. 1 characteristic that influences Allen’s level of play is aggression. When he is feeling confident and assertive, he is a wrecking ball in the paint—effortlessly swatting shots and tipping in misses. The problems begin to arise when he is meek and simply waits for the game to come to him. Maybe that will work when both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are playing and forcing the game to warp to their will. In the meantime, Allen’s aggression will be key to a Nets squad that has not yet locked in their playoff spot.