Nets’ Offense Has Mysteriously Vanished During 12-Game Skid
Offense hasn’t been a problem for the Brooklyn Nets, and what keeps them in the loss column is their laughable defense. However, during their 12-game losing streak, it’s been noticeably harder for them to score.
I originally wanted to add a “screeching halt” into the title, but it would’ve been misleading because the Brooklyn Nets’ lack of production is more puzzling than anything else. The Nets’ offense hasn’t totally floundered over their most recent streak, but a four-point differential is enough to drop them to 29th in points per game — 14 spots lower than the season as a whole.
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Brooklyn sits at 9-45 through the season’s first 54 contests, and it’s clear that everyone on the team has a perpetually green light for shooting. On any given night, the Nets will hoist up roughly 85 shots with almost 30 of them coming from three-point land. That number would be even higher if Brooklyn weren’t turning the ball over a league-leading 17 times a game.
In conjunction with their perimeter game, they have a handful of guys who don’t mind attacking the basket, and they’re 14th in the NBA with 23.6 free-throw attempts a night.
Even though they get up a ton of attempts, their percentages from the field aren’t impressive. What’s more confounding is that their offense isn’t remarkably inefficient during this stretch, and the clips are nearly identical:
- Season shooting percentages: 44.1 from the field, 33.9 from three, 79.3 from the line
- 12-game streak percentages: 43.2 from the field, 33.6 from three, 81.6 from the line
See, it’s not that bad.
There is literally nothing that’s changed, except the Nets shoot about two fewer threes a night, 32.4 compared to 29.8 on their skid. They hit at nearly the same clip regardless, and that’s where most of the point differential comes in. It’s also worth adding that they aren’t getting to the line as often, and that comes down to teams defending them better and forcing them to take fewer shots — not by much, though.
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Five of the nine teams who have beat them are top 15 in points allowed per game on the year: San Antonio Spurs (second), Miami Heat (sixth), Charlotte Hornets (ninth), Toronto Raptors (10th) and the Washington Wizards (15th). Over the last 11 games, all of those teams stayed in the top 15, and the Indiana Pacers joined them with the sixth-best defense during that span.
No player can be blamed for the reduced offense. It’s a team issue and somewhat of a scheduling issue as well. Brooklyn just so happened to play a bunch of hot teams at an inopportune time, and a young, inexperienced team is going to struggle against those who bring the clamps out.
In all objectivity, there’s just as much blame that can be placed on their defense, which has been a constant eye-sore over the course of the year.