Nets’ Second Quarter Collapse Leads to Blowout Loss Against Hawks
Kenny Atkinson faced his old team, the Atlanta Hawks, for the first time with the Brooklyn Nets. While the Nets’ youngsters shined, Atlanta dominated Brooklyn for the entire game, and the Nets fall to 8-29 on the season.
The Brooklyn Nets have now lost their seventh game in a row following a 20-point blowout at the hands of the Atlanta Hawks.
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Brook Lopez scored the game-high 20 points (57 percent shooting) and grabbed six rebounds, and Bojan Bogdanovic scored 16 points (50 percent shooting). However, the highlight for the Nets was the play of first round draft pick Caris LeVert. His statline of 11 points, three rebounds, and two assists does not represent the hustle displayed on the court tonight. Hawks center Dwight Howard recorded a double-double, scoring 14 points and grabbing 16 rebounds.
Howard immediately slam-dunked the ball after tip-off, and that was symbolic of how the first quarter in Brooklyn would go, as the Hawks took an 11-4 lead to start the game. Atlanta shot 60 percent from the field as a team in the first to lead the Nets, 35-29, at the end of one.
LeVert stood out for the Nets in the first half. His hustle was noticeable, aggressively driving to the rim for the and-one or tracking down the ball to grab the rebound after he missed a long mid-range shot. He scored seven points, grabbed two boards, and dished out two assists in his first 10 minutes of play.
Rookie Isaiah Whitehead had some questionable shots in the first half, but excited the Brooklyn crowd with another emphatic block.
However, those were some of the only positives for Brooklyn in the first half, as the Nets found themselves down by 20 in the closing minutes of the first half. The Nets trailed the Hawks, 61-43 at halftime after being outscored 26-14 in the second quarter.
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Howard had a double-double by halftime, scoring 10 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. No Nets scored in double figures by that time, while three Hawks did, including former-Net Kris Humphries (10) off the bench. Bogdanovic led the Nets with nine points (all in the first quarter) on 43 percent shooting. Sean Kilpatrick only had four points, struggling to score, shooting 28.6 percent from the field. The Nets as a team were shooting 36 percent from the field and 29 percent from three-point territory. Brooklyn only had six second-chance points to Atlanta’s 19.
Ironically enough, there were no third quarter woes tonight, as the Nets won the quarter 27-25, but still trailed 86-70. Lopez, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Bogdanovic all scored in double digits by the end of the third.
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