Nets Vs. Wizards Recap: Brooklyn Can’t Extend Win Streak as Washington Takes Off in the Fourth
The Brooklyn Nets entered Thursday night’s game against the Washington Wizards coming off a 21 point comeback victory against the New York Knicks on Wednesday. The Nets looked to extend their win streak to three heading into the All-Star break but after a close game through three quarters, the Wizards would take off in the fourth, the Nets fell to the Wizards 117–103.
The Nets have now finished the first half of the season with a 31–28 record, going 2–8 in their last 10 games and holding the 8th seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Nets started the game missing their first four shots, but Patty Mills would get the team’s first bucket off a corner handoff by Bruce Brown and knocked down a catch and shoot three. Seth Curry would follow up making a corner three over Kyle Kuzma to get the team going. The Wizards looked to attack the Nets inside early, getting by the Nets’ perimeter defenders and creating scoring opportunities at the rim, jumping to a 13–8 lead.
Cam Thomas, who just came off a 21 point outing against the Knicks, came into the game off the bench mid-way through the first, giving the Nets some scoring juice. He knocked down a mid range jumper coming off a ball screen and driving near the baseline against Deni Avdija. Thomas would score six points in the quarter, doing his work in the mid range. The scoring between both teams would be a slow battle as the quarter went on. Jevon Carter gave the Nets much needed scoring to end the quarter, knocking down a side step three and a buzzer beater pull up mid range shot to give the Nets a 28–26 lead going into the second quarter.
The Nets start the second quarter with the team getting some defensive stops, LaMarcus Aldridge blocking Avdija on his drive to the rim. On the other end, the Nets went to an Aldridge post up. The Wizards looked to commit to a double team, which opened up the kick out to Mills who knocked down a three to push their lead. Mills would be the key scorer this quarter, scoring 12 points and doing most of his damage from three, keeping the Nets in the game. The Nets and Wizards would exchange buckets mid-way through the second until the Wizards were able to take off late in the quarter following an Avdija driving layup at the 2:35 mark. The Wizards would take advantage of the Nets late quarter cold scoring and go on a 9-0 run as they attacked the basket, drew fouls, and converted shots inside. The Wizards lead the game 55–51 going into halftime.
The first half proved to be a back and forth game between the teams and it would prove to be a battle of runs. The Nets would shoot 40.9% going 18-44 from the field, they also shot 50% from three going 7-14. The Wizards would shoot 45.8% from the field going 22-48 but would struggle from three, shooting a poor 33.3% going 4-12. The Wizards would win the close rebounding battle as they secured 26 boards in the first half compared to the Nets, who secured 23 rebounds.
In the third quarter, the Wizards would continue to get by the Nets’ perimeter defenders and attack the basket while the Nets struggled to find some offense as they missed eight shots to start the quarter. Andre Drummond would face some foul trouble, as he picked up his fourth foul early in the quarter, he would struggle to find offense as he missed two shots early on the inside.
The Wizards took a 13 point lead early in the third, taking advantage of the Nets’ cold scoring. The Nets scoring drought would end at the 8:32 mark in the third, off a Bruce Brown hard drive inside and finishing over Thomas Bryant. The Nets started to get a run and some team energy going at the 7:18 mark after David Duke Jr. threw down a one-handed dunk over Daniel Gafford off a jab step and drive to the rim. Curry started to catch fire moments later knocking down two threes, which would cut the Wizards lead down to six. The Nets would get some much needed stops and battle back this quarter getting production from Aldridge who ended the quarter with nine points and Curry who ended the quarter with six. Thomas would hit an off the dribble three off a ball screen at the 2:10 mark that would tie the game up 73 a piece. Carter would add on knocking down a pull up three in transition to take the lead. The quarter would ultimately end with the two teams tied up 78 a piece.
The fourth quarter was rough for the Nets, they shot 38.1 percent from the field going 8–21 and their three point shooting went cold as they shot a poor 25 percent going 3–12. The Wizards just couldn’t seem to miss as they shot 88.9 percent from the field going 16-18 and knock down six threes, shooting 85.7 percent. Ish Smith and Rui Hachimura led the way for the Wizards as they combined scoring 24 points in the quarter.
The first possession of the fourth saw Thomas fumble the ball off a handoff which resulted in the Wizards stealing the ball and leading to a Hachimura dunk. The Wizards would capitalize on some of the Nets’ poor offense and convert three point shots by getting the Nets’ defense scrambling. Corey Kispert and Anthony Gill would be the beneficiaries out of the Wizards driving, kicking, and moving the ball quickly. The Wizards would climb to a 93–83 lead to start the quarter. Thomas would give the Nets some scoring as he had 11 points in the quarter. The Nets couldn’t get much consistent stops as the Wizards kept attacking the rim, kicking to shooters, and capitalizing on their three point shots.
The Nets were able to cut the Wizard’s lead down to six at the 3:05 mark. They got a steal on Kuzma, which lead to Brown running in transition and getting a layup. Then Brooklyn got a needed stop off an offensive foul from Hachimura. Thomas would cut the lead to six as he hit a tough running floater as he rejected a double ball screen and drove to the rim. The Wizards would come back and Smith would hit an off the dribble shot to respond. Coming back on offense, Thomas would throw a poor pass to Aldridge, which would result in a turnover leading to an Avdija dunk pushing the lead back to 10. The dagger would come from Hachimura at the 1:40 mark. Smith gets a double ball screen, Aldridge drops off of Hachimura which opened up the pop and he knocked it down.
According to cleaning the glass, The Wizards thrived scoring at the rim the entire game as they shot 72.4 percent at the rim. The Wizards also shot 50 percent from three, going 12-24 while the Nets shot 37 percent from three on 14–38 shooting. The Nets also couldn’t score efficiently inside, shooting a poor 39.1 percent at the rim going 9–23.
The Nets enter the all-star break with the eighth seed in the East and still without Ben Simmons and Kevin Durant. When they return from the break, they face a tough schedule with playing tagainst he Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, and the Miami Heat.