The Brooklyn Nets beat the 76ers by more than 30 points at home on Monday, but it wasn’t so easy in Philadelphia on Friday as the Sixers took them to overtime and eventually won 121-120. The Nets have now lost three out of the last four and are entering a stretch where they play the Pacers twice, the Spurs and Thunder in the next week six games.
Joe Johnson was out with “personal issues”, whatever that means, and Kevin Garnett sitting because he’s too old to play every day, the Nets didn’t play with any energy and were absolutely dominated in the paint. The Sixers outscored them 66-30 in the paint and out-rebounded them 49-36.
“We gotta be up for everybody,” Paul Pierce said. “It’s not like we’re walking giants. We’re bottom-feeders right now, just like Philadelphia. We don’t have the luxury (to come) in here and coast, come into the fourth quarter and turn it up. Those are the great teams that understand that and understand the moment. We’re not there yet.”
Alan Anderson led the Nets with 26 points, a season-high for him, Pierce had 24, 10 rebounds and five assists and Deron Williams had 17 points and 14 assists. Brook Lopez had 22 points, but that was in 44 minutes on 9-of-19 shooting. He was a problem defensively too as he only had seven rebounds in all that time.
The Nets were never really in control or totally lost in this game as they never led by more than eight, never trailed by more than nine and there were 31 lead changes. They shouldn’t be letting a team like the Sixers hang around though and it was their play in the paint that allowed it.
Still, they had a chance to win this game in regulation as D-Will had a chance on an 18-footer with one second left, but missed the shot. The way the game ended was disappointing as well as it looked like the refs missed a charging call on Evan Turner‘s final layup that won it.