Two of the NBA’s extra shocking groups this season met Monday in Brooklyn, the place the red-hot Pistons (winners of 12 of 14 coming in) took on the Nets (on tempo for his or her greatest end since 2013-14).
It was aggressive for a few quarter.
Benefiting from their customary stability, the Nets by no means trailed over the ultimate 45:26 and led by as many as 31 en path to a complete 103-75 conquest.
It was their third-largest victory of the season, and the second-largest defeat for the Pistons.
Of extra significance, the Nets hopped previous the Pistons by half a recreation for sixth place within the Jap Convention as they proceed to pursue their first playoff berth in 4 years.
The victory clinched the season collection for the Nets at 2-1. On condition that each they and the Pistons are probably too low within the standings to climb any larger than sixth, that may very well be important as they play their remaining 13 and 16 video games, respectively. (The Warmth sit in eighth place with 16 video games left, and path the Nets by simply two within the loss column with one final assembly on April 10 within the regular-season finale.)
”They introduced a tricky mindset and a way more bodily recreation,” stated Pistons ahead Blake Griffin, who was restricted to 10 factors on 1-for-10 taking pictures.
What the Nets lack in star energy — sorry, D’Angelo Russell, you are not fairly there, current All-Star berth however — they greater than make up for with depth and chemistry. Each traits have been on full show towards the Pistons with seven double-figure scorers and a smothering defensive effort.
Certainly, along with permitting their fewest factors since Dec. 2014, a span of 375 video games, Detroit’s depressing 27.eight taking pictures share was the third worst by a Nets opponent — ever.
“Our guys attacked it,” Nets coach Kenny Atkinson stated. ”Generally while you’re not used to those massive video games you may be in your heels somewhat bit. However, I felt like we have been the extra aggressive crew and we weren’t afraid of the second. Positively a very good signal for us if we now have extra of those massive video games sooner or later.”
We’ll discover out quickly sufficient. The Nets now embark on a completely brutal 16-day, seven-game street journey that includes 5 groups at present slated to make the postseason, together with the 76ers, Thunder, Path Blazers and Jazz.
Convey the identical defensive depth as they did towards the Pistons, and so they simply would possibly survive.
The final phrase
So, as you may need heard, issues bought fairly ugly Monday in Utah, the place the Jazz are investigating a profanity-laced confrontation that happened between Thunder famous person Russell Westbrook and a fan.
The incident marred what was in any other case an intriguing matchup between two potential postseason opponents who already do not like one another a lot after assembly in final season’s playoffs, with the Jazz eliminating the Thunder Four-2 within the first spherical.
Such setbacks cannot be avenged within the common season, however the Thunder did their degree greatest by sweeping all 4 conferences, together with Monday’s 98-89 victory through which they led by as many as 17 within the fourth quarter.
The Jazz did rally inside six late within the interval earlier than Westbrook had the final phrase, scoring 5 factors throughout a 9-1 run that put the sport away. That included a 33-foot Three-pointer that he appeared to take pleasure in fairly a bit:
Again to the drafting board
The narrative machine has been in full drive for the Celtics currently, with tales of the beleaguered crew bonding on their current flight West surfacing as they stitched collectively a modest however much-needed three-game profitable streak, together with final week’s 33-point throttling of the Warriors.
Are the Celtics, scribes breathlessly requested, lastly fastened?
Possibly, possibly not. Turning of their worst defensive efficiency since 1994, the Celtics yielded a whopping 140 factors to the Clippers, together with 78 within the second half alone, en path to a 25-point defeat through which they led for a grand whole of 1 possession.
A lot of that needed to do with the Clippers, who proceed to defy expectations. They did it once more Monday as they shot 61.6 % and Lou Williams scored 34 factors to surpass Dell Curry because the all-time chief in bench factors. Taking part in with out the injured Jayson Tatum definitely did not assist.
However the loss additionally fell squarely on the Celtics, who had ranked fourth in defensive effectivity coming in however mustered just about zero resistance because the deficit ballooned to as a lot as 30 factors.
And now they head residence going through lots of the similar doubts and questions as earlier than.
It hasn’t been an ideal week for the NBA’s greatest, with convention frontrunners Milwaukee and Golden State absorbing embarrassing losses to the Suns inside a span of six days.
Subsequent up for a flip within the barrel? The Raptors, who misplaced 126-101 loss to a Cavaliers squad that trailed them by 31.5 video games coming in. And so they weren’t even resting Kawhi Leonard!
Including insult to literal harm, they’re going to nearly definitely be with out Serge Ibaka for no less than a recreation or two after he and Marquese Chriss have been ejected for preventing.
The Warriors endured most likely their worst lack of the season on Sunday, shedding to the lowly Suns regardless of coming into as 17-point favorites. Ever the optimist, Stephen Curry famous that the Warriors have a direct alternative to show the web page with their subsequent outing, a marquee matchup towards Western Convention rival Houston.
“The fantastic thing about the NBA is that on Wednesday we now have a possibility to ship an announcement,” stated Curry, as reported by ESPN. “We now have to benefit from that chance. We’re trying ahead to it, no query.”
Which teed up Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni, little question feeling good after his crew beat the Hornets for his or her ninth straight win, for an epic barb:
Mike D’Antoni on Steph Curry’s ‘assertion’ remark: “Yeah, effectively they need to’ve most likely stated it earlier than (the Suns recreation).”
— Salman Ali (@SalmanAliNBA) March 12, 2019
Cross the rock
Rockets level guard Chris Paul is used to shelling out assists. He was on the receiving finish Monday courtesy of teammate Iman Shumpert’s stunning little daughter Junie.
An help @CP3 will not neglect! 👏 pic.twitter.com/x1wn2wV9E0
— NBA TV (@NBATV) March 12, 2019
So, Joel Embiid bought a brand new canine. He named it after former 76ers GM Sam Hinkie. That’s all.
“Klaus Hinkie De Paula Embiid” balling in his new furrari ❤️#TheProcess#HeDiedForOurSins#VampireDiariespic.twitter.com/yzBEfxO4dB
— Joel Embiid (@JoelEmbiid) March 12, 2019
Come on man …
My favourite signal of the season: “GO CAVES” pic.twitter.com/YVzZulr3JZ
— J.E. Skeets (@jeskeets) March 12, 2019