The Nets went into the game vs the Charlotte Bobcats Saturday night with a 5 game losing streak on the line and did everything they needed to do to make that streak go away. The Nets opened the first quarter strong (shocking) with Sheldon Williams coming out and putting up 6 points and 8 rebounds along with an assist on a fast break. Yes I said the Landlord running the fast break. The Landlord had help to start the game with Deron Williams dropping dimes left and right for 7 first quarter assists and the Nets lead after one-quarter 26-21. The Nets made a point to get the ball inside on the weakened Bobcats front line that were punished for 72 points in the paint in their last game and the Nets continued that strategy by pounding the ball in. The strategy worked as the Nets ended up with 24 points in the paint in the opening half in which they took the lead 48-42 into the locker room.
Deron Williams started the second half with a fierce look in his eye and went to the hoop with a few whirling dervish moves that ended up in buckets for himself or teammates and that led to a nice unwarranted elbow to his face by Corey Maggette. After that hit to the face Williams confronted Maggette and was issued a technical foul which only got Williams going even more. DWill immediately went down and hit a three pointer and played with poise and patience after that and it culminated in a beautiful alley oop to G5 (Gerald Green) and the Nets went on to finish the third quarter with their largest third quarter lead of the year of 23 points to lead 81-58. We all know how bad the Nets have been this year in the fourth quarter and this was a chance to shed that redundancy and put together a full four quarters. As always the Bobcats made a run to start the fourth and cut the lead to 13 before Gerald Wallace brought his infectious effort and unwavering intensity to hold off the run and help the Nets regain their lead. The Nets were of course outscored 31-21 in the fourth but had a large enough lead to withstand the run behind Humphries 20 points and 16 rebounds/ Wallace 15 points and 7 rebounds and the Landlord chimed in with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Deron Williams had his usual strong effort with 19 points and 14 assists to lead the Nets to victory 102-89 as all five starters managed to get into double figures for only the third time all year. It was a good win for the struggling Nets and a great way to get back into the win column.
The Nets next game is Monday at the Prudential Center against the visiting Utah Jazz who welcome back Devin Harris and Derrick Favors to NJ for he first time since the trade last year.
Game starts at 7:30pm
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