Will 2012 be any kinder to the Nets than 2011 was? We’re joined in our pregame 3-on-3 by John Krolik (@johnkrolik) and Colin McGowan both of whom are writers at ESPN Truehoop Network affiliate Cavs: The Blog.
1. Kyrie vs. Marshon: Who wins the rookie scoring battle?
- Justin DeFeo: MarShon Brooks. Don’t get me wrong,I love Kyrie Irving’s game, but the silky smooth point guard plays more of a total game and scoring is not his primary responsibility.Plus, he’ll have his hands full dealing with Deron Williams. Brooks on the other hand is like a cyborg, programmed to do three things: eat, sleep and get buckets. In Brooks’ last three games, his confidence hasgrown and he’s scored no less than 17 points.
- John Krolik: Kyrie Irving. He’s a prodigious scorer, he’ll get the minutes, and he’s gotten better and better since his disastrous shooting performance in the season opener.
- Colin McGowan: Kyrie Irving. Last game against the Pistons, Irving showed a willingness to shoulder the scoring load on an offensively-deficient Cavs team. He’ll outscore Brooks, come hell or 22 points on 8-23 shooting.
2. Humphries vs. Varejao: Who wins the rebounds battle:?
- Justin DeFeo: Anderson Varejao. Humphries is sort of elevating himself out of “scrapper” status, but he’s still in the mold of a rugged power forward and has been rebounding very well this season, but Varejao is the scrappiest of scrappers. He’s gets involved in every mixup and his presence will be felt tonight on the boards.
- John Krolik: Humphries. He’s a great rebounder, Lopez is out for a while, and when he comes back he’s still a bad rebounder. That means more rebounds for Humphries.
- Colin McGowan: Humphries outrebounds Varejao. In an upset, Varejao out-unlikables Humphries.
3. Nets-Cavs: who wins the final battle?
- Justin DeFeo: Nets. The Nets at times have looked like a high school JV team and at times a competent playoff team, sometimes even within the same half. So you never quite know what you’ll get with them, but again, they have the best player in the game (D. Williams) and have been playing better basketball of late.
- John Krolik: Cavaliers. Neither team has looked great, so I’m just going to be lazy and pick the team playing at home.
- Colin McGowan: Nets. The Nets are trying to win now. The Cavs are trying to develop young talent. Deron and the boys by single digits.