MILWAUKEE — Avery Johnson was the Eastern Conference’s Coach of the Month for October and November. Now he’s fired in December.
As it turns out, Wednesday’s 108-93 loss to the Bucks at the BMO Harris Bradley Center was the final straw for Brooklyn’s front office as the team fired Johnson on Thursday. Full of hype and expectations in a new city with a new arena and an expensive roster, Brooklyn started the season 11-4. The Nets are just 3-10 since, including two losses to the Bucks. Following an ugly Christmas Day loss to Boston at the Barclays Center, Nets CEO Brett Yormark took to Twitter to voice his frustrations.
“Nets fans deserve better,” Yormark tweeted. “The entire organization needs to work harder to find a solution. We’ll get there.”
A Brooklyn spokesman later released a statement saying that Yormark wasn’t just talking about the team’s performance on the court, but Johnson admitted during his pregame gathering at the Bradley Center that the team needed to perform better.
“We all have to get better,” Johnson said prior to Wednesday’s game. “We all have to improve. It’s going to be a dogfight all year. Nothing is going to be easy. Now is not the time to analyze what’s happened this year because we haven’t even got to the halfway point and we haven’t played a full season with this roster.”
Johnson won’t even get half of a season to get the Nets going. Without Deron Williams, who the Nets decided to keep out of Wednesday’s game with a sprained right wrist, the Bucks handled Brooklyn and likely sealed Johnson’s fate.
Monta machine? Bucks guard Monta Ellis gave one of the best quotes of the season following Wednesday’s win over Brooklyn.
When asked about the mark on his face from getting poked in the eye by Nets forward Reggie Evans, Ellis had a little fun.
“I’m a machine,” Ellis said. “I didn’t even feel that. It just looked bad. It’s not hurt. It’s hard to hurt me.”
All-Star update: The NBA released its second All-Star balloting results Thursday, and Bucks guards Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis remain in the top 10 in the Eastern Conference backcourt.
Ellis remains in sixth place with 71,287 votes, and Jennings dropped from ninth to 10th place with 49,122.
Miami’s Dwyane Wade continues to lead the East’s backcourt with 645,875 votes. The rest of the top five includes Boston’s Rajon Rondo, Brooklyn’s Deron Williams, Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving and Miami’s Ray Allen.
It’s going to be hard for Ellis to move up from sixth place, as Allen has 123,855 more votes than him. Philadelphia’s Jrue Holliday passed Jennings since the last voting update was released.
Radio broadcast change: Due to the NFL flexing the Packers game against the Vikings to a 3:25 p.m. kickoff, Milwaukee’s 6:30 p.m. game against Detroit will move on the radio dial.
Instead of airing of the team’s flagship station of 620 WTMJ, 1250 WSSP will broadcast the game with coverage starting at 6:10 p.m.