The Brooklyn Nets did not struggle offensively in this game. After shooting only 41.7% from the field in Game 1 (23.5% from three), the Nets had an offensive explosion in this one. Brooklyn outscored the Celtics 40-26 in the first quarter, and the game wasn’t even close after that. The Nets had control of the game throughout. The Big Three obviously carried Brooklyn during Game 2, but it was the Nets’ lights-out sharpshooter who stood out.
Joey Buckets Came to Play
What can we even say about Joe Harris anymore? The man is becoming arguably the greatest shooter in team history on the biggest stage. Harris, who of course led the league in three-point percentage, went off in the first quarter. The three-point sniper in the game’s first 6 minutes scored 16 points, which included 4 threes. Us fans often wonder why Harris doesn’t get more shot attempts throughout the course of a game, but the Nets were looking for him tonight.
Harris ended this game with 25 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and a block. This included shooting 70% from three (7-10). What can’t this man do?
Offensive Explosion for Brooklyn
After a poor shooting performance in the first game, the Nets made sure to fix their previous mistakes. The main reason why the Nets struggled so mightily from the field in Game 1 was the lack of ball movement. There was too much iso-ball from the Big Three. Not only did the Nets improve with their ball movement in this game, but it was also nearly a franchise record. Brooklyn’s 31 assists as a team are the second-highest in a game in team playoff history.
The ball was moving terrifically in this game, which led to amazing offense. Six Nets players had at least 3 assists, with the starters accounting for 25 out of the 31. When this team is unselfish, they are awfully hard to beat.
The player of the game for Game 2 was definitely Kevin Durant, who led the team with 26 points, also picking up 8 rebounds, 5 assists, and 4 blocks. Blake Griffin also showed flashes of his younger self, throwing down 2 emphatic dunks on the Celtics in the third quarter. As a team, the Nets shot 52.3% from the field, 44.7% from three, and 95.5% from the line. This included drilling 17 threes and knocking down 21 of 22 shots from the free-throw line. An overall amazing offensive performance by Brooklyn.
Tatum Needs to Be Ready for Game 3
If the Celtics want any chance to make this series competitive, Jayson Tatum needs to be available. The rising star left this game in the third quarter after getting poked in the eye by Kevin Durant. It is unclear whether the injury is serious or just precautionary. Tatum scored only 9 points on 3-12 shooting, which obviously isn’t ideal for the Celtics. Boston currently doesn’t have much offensive power outside of Tatum, so he needs to be ready for Game 3.
What’s Next for the Nets
The Nets will have the next 2 days off before heading to Boston for Game 3. Kyrie Irving will be playing in front of the Boston crowd for the first time since leaving, so expect a toxic environment. The Nets have their eyes set on a 3-0 lead, after winning the first 2 games in this series. You have to go back to 2004 since the last time the Nets led a series 2-0. Game 3 will start at 8:30 PM EST and will be broadcasted nationally on ABC.