Tonight, the Brooklyn Nets defeated the Sacramento Kings 113-93 behind an outstanding shooting and offensive rebounding performance. Even though Brooklyn was one night removed from a tiring double overtime victory over the Washington Wizards, their starters played well in limited minutes and the bench shined. Mirza Teletovic had his best game as a Net and MarShon Brooks broke out with a few dazzling moves and jump shots, collecting 15 points.
The Nets had their best scoring output through two quarters this season, with 65. They led 36-31 at the end of a ridiculously high scoring first quarter in which Brooklyn had a lot of good, easy looks at the basket. Their offense was also effective in the second quarter, but they certainly got lucky on a few shot-clock beating shots.
Brooklyn’s “bench mob” had its best game since the Nets’ incredible November. When the Nets were winning reliably, the bench usually provided a big boost in second quarters. During the team’s struggles in December, the bench was usually ineffective especially when Andray Blatche was moved into a starting role to fill in for injured Brook Lopez.
For the Kings, DeMarcus Cousins had another great game, posting 28 points and 11 rebounds. Travis Outlaw was mildly booed in his first visit to the Nets’ arena after being amnestied by the team this off-season. The Kings are a very bad team defensively and the Nets took full advantage.
For a game box score, click here.
Player grades and notes
Deron Williams: A-
Williams probably would have flirted with a triple double tonight had there not been so much fourth quarter garbage time. He had 15 points, 7 assists, and 6 rebounds. Deron’s defense was fine as the Kings’ point guards had unspectacular games.
Joe Johnson: B+
Johnson did not shoot that well (6-14), but finished with 15 points, 4 assists, and a team high +17.
Gerald Wallace: B
Wallace had an incredible chase down block and a contested shot-clock beating three, but did not do much else.
Reggie Evans: B+
Evans had an impressive 12 rebounds and 7 points, but struggled defensively early on against Jason Thompson.
Brook Lopez: A
In just 16:26 of playing time, Lopez had 18 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 blocks. He probably would have played for longer had he not played so much against Washington last night.
Andray Blatche/MarShon Brooks/Mirza Teletovic: A
The bench provided a spark tonight.
The Nets continue to beat sub-par teams, now with a 12-0 record against teams with a record below .500. They have won 5 of their last 6 games and will have a chance to keep the wins coming next week. They play the 76ers on Tuesday and the Suns on Friday, both sub-.500 teams.