Wizards Hold on For Victory as Nets Drop Fourth of Last Five Games


Final: 01/03/2021

L 122 123

Second-chance opportunities have been a weak point for Brooklyn early in the season, and it was an offensive rebound and bucket that ultimately hurt the Nets on Sunday.

After a dunk pulled the Wizards ahead, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant missed back-to-back shots in Brooklyn’s final possession as the Nets fell 123-122 to the Wizards on Sunday. The loss brings Brooklyn to 3-4 on the season.

The Wizards held on for the victory on following an offensive rebound and deciding dunk by Thomas Bryant. The Nets opted to play small with Jeff Green off the floor — they did find success with the lineup offensively, but ultimately paid the price with Washington taking to the paint in the final moments.

The Wizards out-rebounded the Nets on the offensive glass 13-7 and recorded 23 points off Brooklyn’s 20 turnovers, another issue that continues to arise in each game. Washington also out-scored the Nets in the paint 58-46.

Early on, it was clear that Brooklyn’s shooting woes from Friday night were quick to disappear thanks to a hot start by Kyrie Irving, who finished with 30 points and 10 assists on the night. He was one of three Nets to finish with a double-double on the night, joining Kevin Durant (28 points, 11 rebounds) and Jarrett Allen (14 points, 11 rebounds).

A combination of Brooklyn’s rebounding and turnovers, though, allowed the Wizards to attempt 23 more field goals than the Nets. The game largely remained close throughout the night as the Wizards shot 41.3% and led by as many as 12 points in the second quarter. 

Durant and Irving combined to keep the game close down the stretch while Joe Harris and Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot had timely contributions. Caris LeVert and Landry Shamet continued their recent slumps, with LeVert looking especially frustrated during his 3-of-13 night.

The Nets’ defensive mistakes continue to hurt them, and those miscues provided opportunities and momentum for a 1-5 Wizards team. Russell Westbrook came alive in the fourth quarter with 24 points and 10 assists while Bradley Beal added 27 points and 10 rebounds. Bryant also hurt the Nets with his paint presence, tallying 21 points and 14 rebounds.

It is clear that the Nets still have a lot to figure out collectively, especially without Spencer Dinwiddie. The offense was back — including 25 assists on 40 made field goals — but the second chances and turnovers are killer. It is not time yet to press the panic button, but with four losses in their last five games, time is of the essence for the Nets to flip a switch. 

Kyrie Irving


The stats: 30 PTS, 10-20 FG, 2-7 3PM, 8-8 FT, 5 REB, 10 AST, 2 STL, 2 BLK, 5 TO, 39 MIN

Kyrie started the game with 12 first-quarter points and finished by playing a team-high 39 minutes.

The offense was not the issue for Brooklyn tonight, but rather the chances that were given away. Kyrie was a victim in that area with his five turnovers, but also dazzled in involving his teammates. He also took the initiative to call a timeout to address the Nets’ defensive concerns.

As Kyrie said after the game, there is no cause to worry about the Nets just yet. As Brooklyn looks to find consistency across the lineup, Kyrie will be among the top voices in communicating what it takes to play winning basketball and minimize mistakes.

Kevin Durant


The stats: 28 PTS, 8-15 FG, 2-7 3PM, 11 REB, 7 AST, 6 TO, 38 MIN

KD will be the first to tell you he is turning the ball over too much, and he said as much after the game. But his near-triple-double effort was one of the things keeping Brooklyn in the game despite the Nets allowing the Wizards to shoot 23 more field goal attempts. 

KD is another player that was communicating with his teammates throughout the night, specifically with Joe Harris about help defense. It is just a matter of time as to when the team will be on the same page on both sides of the ball across the lineup.

Yes, KD missed the last shot, but that is not what hurt the Nets the most — it was the second chances and defensive struggles. The buckets will come, but they will not amount to wins without stopping simple mistakes. 

Joe Harris


The stats: 16 PTS, 6-11 FG, 4-8 3PM, 2 REB, 2 STL, 27 MIN

Joe Harris is Mr. Reliable — he does his job and he comes up clutch.

There is not much more you can ask of Joe in his performance against the Wizards. The Nets need his offensive production even more as LeVert and Shamet continue to struggle. 

Jarrett Allen


The stats: 14 PTS, 3-6 FG, 8-9 FT, 11 REB, 1 STL, 4 BLK, 3 TO, 25 MIN

Jarrett Allen’s early-season free-throw shooting has been a great sign for the Nets, and he had one of the top highlights of the game.

Again, the Nets need Jarrett to take better care of the ball, but he has been an important part of Brooklyn’s gameplan as DeAndre Jordan has left much to be desired. Jarrett could have been beneficial defensively down the stretch, too. 

Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot


The stats: 14 PTS, 5-7 FG, 4-5 3PM, 4 REB, 1 AST, 24 MIN

After a poor shooting performance on Friday, TLC was back with a vengeance against the Wizards. 

With TLC getting a feel for his role in the starting lineup, the Nets just need LeVert and Shamet to step up off the bench, too.