The Brooklyn Nets season began on Wednesday Night at the Barclays Center, but the Nets lost a heartbreak 114-113. Brooklyn and Cleveland went back and forth all night and were tied 63-63 at halftime. The Nets led the Cavs 111-105 with 1:24 left but could not close out the game. Donovan Mitchell led the Cleveland comeback, hitting a game-winning 27-foot three-pointer with 12.1 seconds.
The Nets had a chance to win, but Cam Thomas and Cam Johnson missed potential game-winners on this sequence.
The Nets were very fortunate to have a shot to win this game. Brooklyn’s starters combined for just 48 of the Nets 113 points. Mikal Bridges had 20, Cam Johnson had 12, Nic Claxton had seven, Spencer Dinwiddie had five, and Ben Simmons dropped four. Brooklyn’s starters made just two three-pointers. Dennis Smith Jr. and Dorian Finney-Smith both had 10 off the bench.
Cam Thomas sets history in Brooklyn’s devastating loss
The Nets may not have started the season 1-0, but Thomas scored 36 points in just 24 minutes off the bench. In the process, Thomas became the early favorite for the Sixth Man of the Year award and showed the Nets they have a lethal scoring option in their arsenal.
The previous record for most points off the bench in an opening game was Ricky Pierce, who scored 35 points for the Bucks in 1989. Brooklyn’s offense is not high-powered, so the Nets will need all they can get from Thomas this season if they are going to make the playoffs.
Thomas is Brooklyn’s best pure scorer and had the ball in his hands when it mattered most. The LSU product shot 13-21 from the field and two of five from downtown. Nets coach Jacquez Vaughn giving Thomas the ball on the final possession displayed his confidence in Thomas’ abilities, which is essential to note because Vaughn showed little confidence in Thomas last season.
If Thomas continues to ball out like this, he may force Dinwiddie out of Brooklyn’s starting lineup.
When is the Brooklyn Nets next game?
Brooklyn will travel to Dallas and face old friend (actually enemy) Kyrie Irving and the Mavericks on Friday night at 8:30.