|Marcus Thornton came off the bench and was scorching hot immediately. He scored 24 points on 10-19 shooting. He also added four three-pointers.,|
There really isn't much to say about this one other than that the Kings knew there was a game tonight, and prepared for it accordingly, while the Nets did not. Losing their third game in a row overall–and fourth in a row on the away from Barclays–the Nets did nothing right on the floor. They shot terribly (37.8%), didn't bother to contest many Sacramento shots, and didn't move the ball around at all on offense.
The Nets cut the Kings' double-digit halftime lead to nine early in the third quarter and to 12 in the fourth, but weren't able to come any closer due to blatant defensive mishaps which left the Kings wide open for many of their offensive possessions. The third quarter killed Brooklyn yet again, as Sacramento won the frame by a score of 28-19 and built a 20-point lead that wouldn't be overcome. Now sitting at 2-5, one starts to wonder when the Nets are going to start playing with the intensity and passion necessary to become a good team.
If I were to give a single reason as to why the Nets lost yet again this evening in Sacramento, I would say the lack of contesting made on the shots the Kings took. Guys like Marcus Thornton and Jason Thompson took the majority of their shots with no defensive presence at all, which explains why the Nets could never complete their attempted comebacks. Every time the Nets made a basket, the Kings countered with an open jumper or layup which was not heavily defended in the slightest.
Some other observations I had from the game: Kevin Garnett: 2-9. Paul Pierce: 4-12. Joe Johnson: 3-10. When three of your starters are putting up these dismal shooting numbers, there's very little chance you're going to win a game against another NBA team. This was the case with the Nets tonight, as the boys from Brooklyn couldn't hit the broad side of a barn. The shooting isn't going to be helped when you compile almost less than half the assists your opponent does and commit twice as many turnovers (many of which came on dumb offensive fouls)…..The numbers don't show it, but Andray Blatche was horrendous yet again. He caused countless turnovers due to his stunning lack of court awareness/desire to pass the ball. He committed his fair share of mind-numbing offensive fouls, as usual, and generally looked like he had his head fimly entrenched anyone other than Sleep Train Arena….This team needs Andrei Kirilenko badly. He hasn't been great this year, but he brings a defensive presence off the bench that just isn't provided by any other Net…..KG played 15 minutes and compiled a -15 rating. Still is missing loads and loads of open shots. In addition to not putting points on the board, not hitting open attempts frustrates teammates who are actually making their field goals….Shaun Livingston kickstarted the fourth quarter comeback attempt and scored 13 points in 15 minutes on 5-6 shooting. He led the fastbreak, moved the ball, and helped out on defense. Maybe he could teach his teammates a thing or two?…..DeMarcus Cousins only played 22 minutes due to foul trouble, but still managed to score 15 points and grab nine rebounds. If he can get his attitude in check, then he can really be some player….The Nets can go two directions after a brutal loss like this one: Dwell on it and lose out on this road trip or admit their faults, improve on them, and take their next two games in the Pacific Time Zone. What they choose is up to them.
The Nets still look to win their road game of the year in their fifth attempt as they head to sunny Phoenix to face off with the Suns. Brooklyn is trying to snap a three-game losing streak overall.