The red-hot Brooklyn Nets finish off their West Coast road trip with a close win against the LA Clippers. This game did not disappoint and was competitive throughout. Brooklyn had a very close lead for the majority of the game, but managed to pull out the victory with a questionable call at the end sold by James Harden.
An Overall Solid Performance from the Nets
James Harden and Kyrie Irving both got off to amazing starts early, both combining for nearly all of Brooklyn’s points. The Nets defense looked very solid going into half-time, allowing only 51 points to the Clippers through two quarters. Bruce Brown specifically looked absolutely tremendous in this game.
While Brown’s performance isn’t always shown in the box score, his defensive presence alone has been game-changing for Brooklyn. His energy and grittiness has been exactly what this Nets team needs. He showed up big-time on national TV tonight for the NBA world to see just how important he is for this team. He’s basically this team’s center right now at 6’4″.
Speaking of centers, we have to give our acknowledgement to DeAndre Jordan tonight. He’s been a punching bag for a lot of Nets fans this season, but he stepped up big tonight against his former team. He tied a season-high in points and also picked up 4 blocks in this game. Jordan also tipped-in the Kyrie Irving miss at the end to help give the Nets a two-point lead. The shot would ultimately guide the Nets to victory.
There were also some really questionable calls and decisions at the end which ultimately worked in the Nets favor. Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue for some reason challenged a call where Patrick Beverley clearly fouled Jeff Green. Green would have to leave the game with a right shoulder contusion. The decision would backfire on the Clippers considering James Harden got away with a flop with about 8 seconds left. It was called an offensive foul on Kawhi Leonard and Harden sealed the game with 2 free throws.
Lue also decided to bench Paul George with two minutes left because of George’s recent toe injury. Yes, George was on a minutes restriction, but it seems a bit late to bench your star player who was having a terrific game.
What’s Next for Brooklyn
The Nets will now head back to Brooklyn with big-time momentum after finishing off their road trip 5-0. What makes this recent hot stretch even more impressive for the Nets is they did it without Kevin Durant. KD of course has missed the last four games with a hamstring strain, but Steve Nash has recently said that this injury shouldn’t be long-term. There is still no time table on his return.
As stated before, Jeff Green had to leave this game due a right shoulder contusion. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot also had to leave this game early due to a right hip contusion. There have been no further updates on both of their conditions.
Upcoming Game for the Nets
The Nets will have tomorrow off as they travel back to Brooklyn. They will be playing the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday in a game where a limited-capacity is allowed at Barclays Center. There is expected to be around 200 fans allowed against the Kings, with that number growing increasingly over time. The game will of course be broadcasted on YES Network with a start time at 7:30 PM EST.
Performances of Note
James Harden – 37 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals, 13-25 FG, 3-9 3PT, 7-11 FT, 41 minutes
Kyrie Irving – 28 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds, 12-26 FG, 2-11 3PT, 40 minutes
DeAndre Jordan – 13 points, 11 rebounds, 4 blocks, 2 assists, 6-7 FG, 32 minutes
Bruce Brown – 13 points, 8 rebounds, 4 steals, 6-10 FG, 34 minutes
Los Angeles Clippers:
Paul George – 34 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds, 2 blocks, 12-19 FG, 4-9 3PT, 6-8 FT, 33 minutes
Kawhi Leonard – 29 points, 13 rebounds, 3 assists, 9-19 FG, 5-9 3PT, 6-6 FT, 39 minutes
Ivica Zubac – 13 points, 8 rebounds, 6-7 FT, 20 minutes