Brooklyn Nets: What went wrong vs. Kings?


After being up by as much as 15, the Brooklyn Nets saw their lead slip away over the course of the 3rd quarter and most of the 4th quarter. After starting off extremely strong, they failed to create any sort of offense late in the game. Along with that, their defense suffered. But, what exactly went wrong?

One of the main parts of the meltdown was lack of ball movement. In the 1st half, the Nets did a terrific job of running the offense, passing the ball, and finding open guys all over the court. They had 16 assists at halftime on 24 made field goals, and they were shooting a very high percentage. However, in the 2nd half, the ball movement seemed to vanish. On multiple occasions, point guard Jarrett Jack missed Andrea Bargnani tailing the play for a 3, and Jack took a couple bad runners in the process.

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The lack of ball movement could be due to frustration, as the Kings had finally gotten their offense going. After going just 1-10 in the 1st half, Kings’ star center Demarcus Cousins exploded in the 3rd quarter on his way to a 40 point game. He did not miss any jumpers, and he sank a couple clutch threes to open up the Kings’ lead. Because the Nets started to implode on defense, they started to get frustrated on the offensive end. They were taking a lot of bad shots and not finding open guys anywhere.

Another issue that the Nets had was an increased amount of turnovers. In the 1st half, the Nets turned the ball over just twice. However, in the second half, they gave the ball up a whopping 13 times. Bad passes and bad help offense led to a lot of missed opportunities.

Nov 13, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) looks to shoot the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the third quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Brooklyn Nets 111-109. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

One of the issues that the Nets were having was the lack of help when Brook Lopez caught the ball in the paint. There were 3 plays in which the Kings were able to get him trapped, and no one came to help him. Lopez struggled overall in the game, shooting just 5-15 from the field, and the Kings’ defense forced him to turn it over 3 times. When the Nets get the ball to him in the paint, they have to keep a guy on that side of the court to prevent him from getting trapped.

The final reason for why the Nets imploded is somewhat out of their control. As mentioned earlier, Kings’ center Demarcus Cousins absolutely took over the game in the 3rd quarter. He knocked down a couple mid range jumpers, a couple threes, and then drove to the rim, drew fouls, and finished strong. He ended up with 40 points, 13 rebounds, and just one turnover. After starting 1-10 from the field, he ended the game shooting 13-27 and 12-13 from the line. Cousins has always had the ability to take over a game, and he managed to put on a show against the Nets.

If the Nets can fix some of these issues, they will not give away leads like this. It is important for them to stick with their game and continue the team ball that got them the lead in the first place. They cannot let frustration take them away from what works. If they can continue to move the ball and find open guys, they won’t lose games like this anymore.