The Brooklyn Nets broke their 16-game losing streak in a victory against the Sacramento Kings, 109-100. Their second longest in franchise history finally comes to an end.
Brook Lopez entered the game with 9,990 career points and is now second in Nets franchise history in scoring, behind only Buck Williams after surpassing the 10,000-point mark tonight. Lopez could possibly break the Nets all-time scoring record by the end of the season.
Lopez had the team-high 24 points, complimented with seven rebounds. Jeremy Lin had 17 points and five assists in 20 minutes. Rookie Caris LeVert scored 13 points, grabbed seven rebounds, and tallied three steals and two assists.
The first basket of the game was a nice three by Lin. The Nets started off hot, going on an 8-0 lead to start the game. That quick lead quickly turned into 24-10 in favor of Brooklyn. The Nets had a 15-point lead at one point, as they shot 100 percent from three, going 5-for-5 from deep.
The Kings would chip away at their deficit. Buddy Hield came off the bench and brought the Kings within one, 30-29. Isaiah Whitehead quickly responded with a three, which was the first bench points for Brooklyn, to give the Nets some breathing room. The Nets led the Kings, 35-31, at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter saw Brooklyn and Sacramento going back and fourth with the Nets maintaining their lead. Brooklyn went into attack mode, playing dual point guards in Whitehead and Spencer Dinwiddie. Whitehead had another “Brooklyn Cyclone” spin layup in the paint.
Lin assisted Lopez on the big man’s 10,000th point when he scored with a nice two-hand jam. Lopez scored 14 points in the first half, bringing his career total to 10,004 points. The Nets shot 48.8 percent from the field (20-of-41) and 42.1 percent (8-of-19) from long range. Brooklyn led Sacramento, 57-54, at halftime.
The Nets maintained their aggression offensively into the second half. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had some nice plays early, drawing three defenders into the paint before dishing a no-look pass to Lin for the easy layup. LeVert had a nice steal that led to the breakaway dunk.
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Chris Carrino on the YES broadcast acknowledged that while the Nets only had 9 wins in March, fans can find comfort in LeVert being part of the Nets’ future. There were also no third quarter woes, as Brooklyn outscored Sacramento 24-18. The Kings trailed the Nets by nine, 81-72, at the end of three.
Whitehead was very aggressive in the fourth, driving into the paint and drawing fouls. Lin entered late in the fourth quarter, and his playing time passed the 15-minute mark to help Lopez close out this game for the Nets. Tyreke Evans got hot late to cut the Nets’ lead to six.
Seven of the last eight Nets wins have come against Western Conference teams. Brooklyn looks to get their first set of back-to-back wins this season against the Utah Jazz on Friday.