Nets Notes: Depth on full display, Nets dominate Hornets
photo credit: Wendell Cruz, USA Today Sports/Reuters
It is officially time to put to rest the argument that the Brooklyn Nets have no depth beyond “The Big Three.” The Nets have displayed the depth and talent that general manager Sean Marks has assembled in the last two games. This depth extends much beyond Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden.
Without two of their top players, Brooklyn was met with a tough task on Thursday night, looking for a win against the quiet but tight Charlotte Hornets.
Out of the gate, Brooklyn owned this game. They dominated the Hornets in the first quarter, posting 32 points compared to Charlotte’s 11. After a massive comeback against the Houston Rockets Wednesday night, the Nets gained confidence but also lost their MVP candidate Harden to a very minor hamstring injury, which is just day-to-day per Nets coach Steve Nash. This confidence shined in each member of the team against the Hornets. The Nets led 68-48 at the half and never looked back.
In the third quarter, the Nets outscored Charlotte 24-17. They easily won the game, doing so by a score of 111-89.
Alize Johnson was fantastic on both sides of the court. Despite having only 2 points and 5 rebounds, he was very noticeable on the court for the four minutes he played. Expect to see some more minutes from him as we advance.
In his Nets debut, LaMarcus Aldridge put up 11 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists. Still getting back to game speed after his injury, Landry Shamet posted 17 points, a rebound, and 2 assists. Irving had 15 points, 11 rebounds, and 8 assists. Jeff Green had 21 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 assists. Bruce Brown had 14 points and 6 rebounds. Tyler Johnson had 15 points, 3 rebounds, and an assist.
Joe Harris had a decent night. He played thirty-three minutes of solid two-way basketball while posting 9 points, 4 rebounds, and 6 assists. Nicolas Claxton built off his phenomenal night on Wednesday, posting 3 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists in just fourteen minutes,
The Nets have the pieces, depth, and drive to go all the way. It is just a matter of staying healthy and executing. They remain the first seed in the Eastern Conference and look to create a standings gap between themselves and the Philadelphia 76ers.
The Nets travel to Chicago to take on the Bulls Sunday afternoon, with tip-off set for 2:00 PM Eastern Time. Durant is close to his return and should be back in the lineup very soon.