Brooklyn Nets: Player grades from 118-91 debacle in Montreal

(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /
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Brooklyn Nets
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D. 18 MIN, 4 PTS, 1-for-5 (0-for-2), 6 REB, 1 AST, 3 PF, 2 STL, 6 TO, 1 BLK, -19. PF. Brooklyn Nets. RODIONS KURUCS

After two impressive fourth-quarter showings for the Brooklyn Nets, second-round pick Rodions Kurucs stepped up in weight class Wednesday night, getting some first-quarter burn off the bench.

He played hard. He always does. He worked the defensive glass well. But he also turned the ball over six times — three on traveling violations where he shuffled his feet before starting his dribble (something he also did in Detroit on Monday) — and had one particularly annoying sequence.

Kurucs drove to the basket (it’s what he does) and missed the shot. Believing he was fouled, he stared down the closest official all the way down to the defensive end, where he never really picked up his man and led to a Toronto bucket.

You’re a rookie second-round pick. You have absolutely zero cache with the refs. Didn’t get the call? Gee, that’s too bad — now get your a$ back and D up.

D-. 14 MIN, 4 PTS, 2-for-6 (0-for-2), 1 REB, 3 PF, 3 TO, -20. SG. Brooklyn Nets. DZANAN MUSA

First-round pick Dzanan Musa struggled Wednesday … a lot.

He’s got a lightning-quick first step off the bounce, but those out-of-control drives need to have more purpose beyond, “Please, Mr. Referee, bail me out with a whistle.”

Defensively, he’s got a lot to learn. The effort is there, but he can struggle when defending off the ball. Like many young European players, he gets a little lost out there when he’s not man-up on the ball handler.

He’s going to get to the foul line given his style of play as a slasher. So he’s really got to start making some of those foul shots. It was something he struggled with last month while playing for the Bosnian national team and he missed both of his attempts from the stripe against Toronto.