Brooklyn Nets vs. Charlotte Hornets Takeaways and Player Grades
Nov 4, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (24) drives to the basket against Charlotte Hornets guard Marco Belinelli (21) in the fourth quarter at Barclays Center. Hornets win 99-95. Mandatory Credit: Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports
The Brooklyn Nets lost a very tight game against the Charlotte Hornets, 99-95, at home in the Barclays Center.
The Brooklyn Nets fall to 2-4 as the Charlotte Hornets improve to 4-1. The game itself was tight in the second half, as the Nets led by 13 points at most in the first half. Jeremy Lin was out with a hamstring injury for the Nets. They were led by Sean Kilpatrick, who scored 19 points off the bench. Brook Lopez scored 18 points and Trevor Booker scored 12 points and grabbed 13 boards. Isaiah Whitehead made the first start of his career, and he added eight points in his starting debut.
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The Charlotte Hornets were led by Kemba Walker, who scored a season-high 30 points. Nicolas Batum scored 18 points, while Marvin Williams shot a clutch three-pointer 1:05 at the fourth quarter. Prior to that shot, he shot only 1-12 from the field.
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The Nets, after having an efficient first half shooting the basket, saw themselves getting outscored by the Hornets 30 to 20 in the second half. In the first half, the Nets led by 13 points, twice. The Hornets managed to lower the deficit near the first and second quarter’s end. In the third quarter, Charlotte took control of the game.
The Nets were slightly out rebounded by the Hornets 49-46, but the Hornets shot 33 percent from three, while the Nets shot 25 percent from three. Both teams turned the ball over a lot as well. The Nets had 15 turnovers, while the Hornets had 16.
Both teams had an identical game in terms of numbers. What it all came down to in this game, especially in the second half, is who could score more and who could make a bucket in crunch time. Hornets fans have Marvin Williams to thank for that clutch three when the Nets were only down by one.
Nov 4, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker (15) in the fourth quarter against Brooklyn Nets guard Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (24) and forward Trevor Booker (35) at Barclays Center. Hornets win 99-95. Mandatory Credit: Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports
1. Poor Third Quarter
The Nets were leading the game by 13 twice and on both occasions, they lost the lead. The Hornets tied the game in the first quarter when they were down 43-50. In the third quarter, the Nets lost the lead and they shot the ball poorly, as they shot only 34 percent on the floor. Brooklyn, in the first half, despite all the turnovers that were committed, still moved the ball around and created good shots for themselves. In the second half, especially in the third quarter, the Nets didn’t take smart shots and the ball just kept sticking to one player. Not to mention there were lapses on defense, as they allowed Kemba Walker to slowly take over the game. The Nets need to start their second half’s stronger than they did tonight or they will make themselves play games like tonight throughout the season.
2. Brook Lopez, where were you??
Brook Lopez started the first quarter hot, scoring 10 points, but after three quarters, he only scored eight points. Overall in the game, he shot 7-of-17 (41.2 percent) and shot 2-of-6 (33.3 percent) from behind the arc. Lopez shot some terrible three-point shots, as he wasn’t in good position. What’s worse is the fact that he only had three rebounds in the game. Three rebounds for goodness sake. A big man as talented as Lopez shouldn’t only be having three rebounds and definitely shouldn’t have disappeared after the first quarter. He didn’t provide scoring as he did in the first quarter, and there were moments where Kemba Walker was schooling him. With Lin’s absence, Lopez needs to step up and be more aggressive.
3. The many factors that the Nets need to improve on throughout the season
The Nets losing Jeremy Lin is a tough loss, as they did lose a consistent playmaker. Isaiah Whitehead took his place in the starting lineup, but he didn’t perform that well, as he had three turnovers and five fouls. Sean Kilpatrick took most of the minutes off the bench, playing the point and in the final stretch, Whitehead was on the bench. Kilpatrick scored 19 points, shooting 5-of-15 (33.3 percent) and most of his points came from the free-throw line (7-of-10 from the line).
The Nets had 15 turnovers, most of them from poor passing and steals from the Hornets. Brooklyn needs Jeremy Lin back in terms of stability at the point guard spot so Kilpatrick doesn’t have to do too much on the floor. Their bench, aside from Kilpatrick and Justin Hamilton, didn’t show. Hamilton finished with nine points on 4-of-7 shooting. Lack of depth is another issue for the Nets, as there isn’t anyone dynamic enough to pick up the slack when one man goes down. Brooklyn needs to figure out this issue one way or another. The Nets didn’t stick to their game plan of ball movement, thus leading to a poor third quarter and the Hornets ultimately taking the lead.
Player of the Game
Shooting Guard, Brooklyn Nets
B+Sean Kilpatrick scored 19 points, shooting 5-of-15 from the field. Seven points came from the line (7-of-10 from the line). Kilpatrick did’t have an efficient shooting game, as he only shot 33.3 percent from the field with a couple of turnovers, but you did see a guy that was trying to will his team to win a game, which is why he took as many shots as he took. He had four assists, doing his part on distributing the ball. As soon as Kilpatrick gets himself acclimated to the point guard role, expect him to take a lot of shots to pick up the slack in place of Jeremy Lin.
SF, Brooklyn Nets
BRondae Hollis-Jefferson had a well-rounded game, as he scored 11 points on 4-of-5 shooting (80 percent) and shot 2-of-2 from the three-point line. He grabbed eight boards, dished out six assists, and had four steals. With Jeremy Lin absent, Nets fans would like to see Hollis-Jefferson keep up that consistent all-around game. Four steals show Hollis-Jefferson’s well-known defense, but his playmaking is getting better as he had six assists. If he keeps up with that kind of play consistently, the Nets are in good hands.
PF, Brooklyn Nets
BTrevor Booker had a decent game as well. He scored 12 points, shooting 5-of-9 (55.6 percent) and grabbed 13 boards. He had two blocks on three-point attempts, which is impressive. Booker also did his best, trying to lead the Nets to win the game by scoring key buckets late in the fourth quarter. At times, he tried to do too much by taking silly shots, but you have to respect the guy for his hustle. Look for him to be the enforcer and the tough guy on the Nets roster.
Up Your Game, Please
C, Brooklyn Nets
C-Brook Lopez started the game hot, scoring 10 points in the first quarter, but scored eight points three quarters after that. He finished with 18 points on 7-of-17 shooting from the field (41.2 percent). He also grabbed three boards, which is embarrassing. A big man of his talent shouldn’t disappear for three quarters. He shouldn’t only grab three rebounds either. His performance was bad for a player of his caliber and he needs to step up in the upcoming games.
Next time the Brooklyn Nets will play is at home against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday, November 8th.