Brooklyn Nets: Joe Harris expected back Wednesday night

Brooklyn Nets Joe Harris (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Brooklyn Nets Joe Harris (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

The Brooklyn Nets and their floundering offense look to get a boost Wednesday night as it appears wing Joe Harris is ready to return after a 3-game absence.

After a full practice on Tuesday, Brooklyn Nets small forward Joe Harris is on target to return to the lineup against the Oklahoma City Thunder after missing the last three games with tightness in his left adductor.

According to a report from Greg Joyce of the New York Post, Harris should be back Wednesday night as Brooklyn tries to end dueling seven-game losing streaks. The Nets have lost seven straight overall and are 0-7 in their last seven games at Barclays Center as well.

The Nets struggled offensively without Harris, their top 3-point shooter. The fifth-year veteran spoke to the media after Tuesday’s practice session.

"“Ready to go. Everybody’s ready to bounce back. The energy level was a lot higher (Tuesday) in practice than it has been in a while, which is good. It’s obviously tough with this skid we’ve been on, but everybody’s still coming in optimistic, positive spirits, ready to bounce back.”"

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In three games without Harris, the Nets scored a season-low 88 points in a loss to the Washington Wizards in DC on Saturday, shot worse than 40 percent in each of their last two games and struggled from 3-point range.

In that three-game span, which included a double-overtime loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, a 14-point loss at Washington and Monday’s 99-97 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers, Brooklyn shot just 40.5 percent (111-for-274) overall and were 34-for-117 (29.1 percent) from 3-point range.

After putting up 125 points in the Memphis loss, the Nets scored 88 and 97 points, respectively, just the third and fourth games this season Brooklyn has failed to reach 100.

In 22 games this season, Harris is averaging 12.9 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 29.2 minutes per game, shooting .490/.440/.813.

The next-best 3-point shooter on the club is Spencer Dinwiddie at 36.2 percent (Shabazz Napier is at 37.1 percent, but doesn’t quite qualify for the league lead).

So, yes, Harris has been missed.

Coach Kenny Atkinson indicated after Monday’s game that he was hopeful to get Harris back, which would mean a return to their “normal lineup.”

That would indicate Dinwiddie would return to his spot with the second unit after starting the three games Harris was out. Allen Crabbe would likely return to the 2 after making three starts at the 3 in Harris’ place.

Dinwiddie has been the leader of the second group and has gotten himself into at least the conversation for Sixth Man of the Year by averaging 16.0 points, 2.6 rebounds and 4.8 assists in 27.6 minutes per game in 22 relief appearances, shooting .472/.379/.802.

In three games as a starter, Dinwiddie averaged 13.7 points, 2.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists in 34.5 minutes a night, but shot just .378/.273/7-for-10.

The offense couldn’t have picked a better time to get a shot in the arm, with the Thunder bringing the most efficient defense in the NBA to Barclays Center Wednesday night.

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Oklahoma City allows a league-best 100.5 points per 100 possessions, nearly three points better than second-place Boston’s 103.1.