Nets’ Win Streak Ends at Four With Loss to Trail Blazers


Final: 04/30/2021

L 109 128

The Nets entered Friday’s game with a skeleton crew — and Portland brought too big a scoring punch for Brooklyn to counter.

The Trail Blazers outscored the Nets 128-109 in a contest that ended Brooklyn’s four-game winning streak. The Nets fell behind by as many as 22 points in a stagnant showing as six Portland players scored in double figures on the night.

Brooklyn was without Kevin Durant and Bruce Brown on the second half of a back-to-back as James Harden and Nic Claxton continue to remain sidelined. Kyrie Irving led the Nets with 28 points as the team lacked pace and shot just 42.1% from the field in a rare home loss.

The Nets led by as many as seven points as they got off to a quick start offensively, but Portland later took over — especially in the second half. The Trail Blazers used the three-ball to out-score Brooklyn 69-52 in the third and fourth quarters as the Nets’ tired legs were apparent with ineffective defense.

While Portland shot 51.6% from the field and 16-of-36 from deep, the Nets tallied just 13-of-41 shooting from distance on a night they couldn’t keep up. Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic combined for 55 points on the night as the Trail Blazers got their way both from distance and in out-rebounding the Nets 57-47 as they exploited their size. (Did we mention Lillard is just silly?)

The Nets attempted to cut into Portland’s lead at the start of the fourth quarter, but the Trail Blazers just built on it from there. Portland ended the third quarter on an 18-6 run and did not look back.

Brooklyn’s schedule to close the season is not an easy one, and they find their next test in the Bucks on Sunday. It’ll be the first of two meetings the teams will have in the next week as the top three teams in the Eastern Conference jockey for positioning in the standings.

Some additional healthy players would be good news for Brooklyn, especially as they set off on an 11-day road trip.

Kyrie Irving


The stats: 28 PTS, 12-26 FG, 2-8 3PT, 2-2 FT, 2 REB, 3 AST, 1 STL, 1 TO, 33 MIN

It was a slow start for Kyrie, but his second-half showing did not move the needle enough for the Nets.

Kyrie dropped 13 of his 28 points in the third quarter but underwhelmed in the fourth, adding just two more. Though he wows in the paint, his shot seems to be coming up short more often than not before he finds a rhythm. 

Kyrie had Thursday off due to a sore groin, so it was good the Nets had at least one member of the Big Three available. He added a good boost in the third quarter but the Nets needed him to set a better pace throughout the contest. 

Jeff Green


The stats: 16 PTS, 5-9 FG, 3-5 3PT, 3-4 FT, 6 REB, 1 STL, 1 TO, 30 MIN

Jeff Green made a team-high three three-pointers, all of them coming in the first half. We’d show a highlight, but there aren’t any up of Uncle Jeff on the Nets’ Twitter account. 

Jeff led the Nets at halftime with 15 points, but like others, went cold the rest of the way. He contributed on the boards and was busy on defense, but maybe could have used some more looks.

The Nets can always rely on Jeff Green to give his all each night, and his second-quarter burst allowed the Nets to enter halftime with just a two-point deficit. Brooklyn just wishes they could have gotten some more in the second half. 

Mike James


The stats: 15 PTS, 6-15 FG, 1-4 3PT, 2-2 FT, 1 REB, 3 AST, 2 TO, 24 MIN

It continues to impress just how well Mike James has fit in with the Nets.

The newest Net continued to show a good handle and pace, though the bench largely struggled offensively. Mike instead remained aggressive and made up most of Brooklyn’s bench production with his 15 points.

Mike continues to distinguish himself as a gritty, confident player and natural playmaker off the bench. He did what he could to produce with what was a mostly lackluster effort from the second unit.

Joe Harris


The stats: 12 PTS, 5-8 FG, 2-3 3PT, 1 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 2 TO, 32 MIN

Joe did well with his looks, he just needed more.

The Trail Blazers did their best to keep Joe off the three-point line, and their plan worked. Joe hit his first threes of the night in the second half, but little momentum came from it.

Joe always hustles and gets involved in other ways, including another dunk!, but the Nets were not prepared to get Joe free enough. Joe has proven he can drop 20+ points as the secondary scorer and needed more opportunities against Portland. 

Blake Griffin


The stats: 11 PTS, 4-12 FG, 2-7 3PT, 1-1 FT, 8 REB, 4 AST, 1 BLK, 24 MIN

Blake nearly had a double-double, but he definitely looked tired at times.

Steve Nash opted to play Blake on the second half of a back-to-back, and Griffin had his moments. Still, the Trail Blazers opted to give Blake extended looks from the field, and the gamble paid off for Portland as Blake shot 33.3%.

Blake also had the task of defending Jusuf Nurkic at times, who always gets his way against the Nets. DeAndre Jordan had some success guarding Nurkic, but Jusuf ultimately got the last laugh.