1. Road success meets a long road losing streak
The Brooklyn Nets are just 3-8 at home this season, but are a pretty solid 5-7 on the road, including a Nov. 16 win over Saturday’s opponent, the Washington Wizards, back on Nov. 16.
Brooklyn has won two of its last three on the road, with its last road victory (and last win overall) coming on Nov. 20 against the Miami Heat in South Beach.
They followed that up, however, with their 33rd consecutive loss on the road in the second game of a back-to-back, losing the following night to the Dallas Mavericks.
There is no tougher road game than the second game of a back-to-back (brilliantly turned into the acronym SEGABABA by the good folks at Pounding the Rock) many years ago.
The Nets are 0-5 in road SEGABABAs this season and 0-25 overall since coach Kenny Atkinson took over the club in 2016. Their last win in a road SEGABABA goes all the way back to Dec. 21, 2015, when they beat the Chicago Bulls at United Center.
It’s an understandable trend when you think about it. You go through the 48-minute grind, then have to travel and do the whole thing again 24 hours or so later on tired legs.
And Brooklyn goes into Saturday’s game at Washington coming off 58 minutes and a brutal double-overtime loss in which they let late leads slip away both at the end of regulation and late in the first overtime.
So heading into the game Saturday night, here are some things to remember from Friday night’s game, in terms of minutes counts against the Memphis Grizzlies:
- D’Angelo Russell, 45
- Spencer Dinwiddie, 43
- DeMarre Carroll, 39
- Jarrett Allen, 39
- Rondae Hollis-Jeffferson, 38
Those are all far above the per-game averages for those players, as the team leader in that category is injured Caris LeVert at 29.7 minutes a night.
The Nets, who played Friday night without Joe Harris for the first time this season as he was sidelined by tightness in his left adductor, did bring back Dzanan Musa from assignment to the NBA G League’s Long Island Nets Saturday morning.
Musa played 32 minutes Friday night for Long Island in its win against the Greensboro Swarm at Greensboro, N.C., and has played in just six of the 14 games he’s been with the parent Brooklyn club this season, so he’s likely with the team for exposure/emergency depth.
Considering it’s been almost three years since the Nets won a road SEGABABA, the law of large numbers would almost be statistically likely to kick in at some point. And it’s not as though Brooklyn couldn’t use a break after blowing fourth-quarter leads in their last three losses.