Let’s put that one behind us. It was a night to forget for the Brooklyn Nets, in their first back-to-back of the season, as they were dominated by the Pacers on the way to a 132-112 loss. The performance illustrated how far away the Nets really are from being a genuine playoff team. Indiana picked them apart in pretty much every facet on the floor. Here are a few takeaways from game three.
In game two against the Knicks the Nets lost forward Treveon Graham to a hamstring strain. This time around it was rookie Rodions Kurucs who continued Brooklyn’s wretched luck of late, sustaining a rolled ankle. Fortunately the x-rays on the young forward were negative and he should be right to suit up for the team’s next matchup with the Cavaliers on Wednesday.
Outside of the injury, Kurucs continued his hot form with 12 points and 6 rebounds in only 14 minutes of playing time.
He plays without fear and a sense of confidence that few rookies coming into the league have, let alone a 2nd round pick. His hot form will no doubt earn him more court time, especially with the Nets lack of depth at the four positions.
Caris Can Do No Wrong
Caris was one of the few bright spots in a lackluster showing by the team overall. He continued his sizzling form finishing with 19 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and a block.
LeVert’s form is not only garnering attention from Nets fans and media but the general public and respected NBA alumni. There’s growing popularity for him as an early season favorite for Most Improved Player; an award Nets fans are very aware of.
Caris LeVert is so, so good.
— Kevin O’Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) October 20, 2018
Per Mike Schmitz, over the first 3 games, he’s averaging 24.7 PTS in 31 MIN with a 75.1 true shooting %. Obviously, that percentage will go down but with his rapid improvement as a scorer, there’s no reason why he can’t continue putting the ball in the basket at will. His 3-point shot has more consistency and arc, while his control around the rim matched with his speed and length is second to none.
We might not have got the win against Indiana but we do have them to thank for securing the talents of one of the league’s developing young stars.
The Dreaded ‘T’ Word
OTG’s Nick Fay and I discussed at length with Zach Murphy the Nets’ turnover issues. Not just the fact they’re committing them at an alarming rate but that they haven’t able to force many from their opponents on the other end.
You can’t expect to win games against some of the league’s better competition giving back the ball 20 times+. They currently lead the league in turnovers per game ahead of the Bucks and Warriors. Milwaukee and Golden State have the elite talent to make up for it on the other hand while a team like Brooklyn is still carving their identity in the league.
It’s not just the turnovers themselves but the nature of the turnovers. Careless passes can be eradicated with composure and greater engagement. The challenge for the Nets isn’t eradicating turnovers altogether but getting rid of the needless ones.