After the shot clock expired Tuesday night, solidifying another disillusioning game for the Brooklyn Nets, coach Steve Nash entreated his players to search internally and ask themselves “what type of team they want to be.”
“I don’t think that we go out every single day of our lives and sacrifice the time in order to be average at anything,” Kyrie Irving said after Brooklyn’s third straight loss. “And we look very average. And we have the talent that the eye test presents that we should be dominating.”
Brooklyn has built up a pattern this season of playing incredibly hard – and often times beating – the teams toward the top of the standings, however losing to the league’s bottom dwellers. Truth be told, with a 122-111 misfortune in Detroit on Tuesday, the Nets are presently 7-11 against teams with a record below .500 – the most such misfortunes in the league.
Jerami Grant attached his career high with 32 points for the Pistons. Irving, who was playing with a sprained index finger, gotten done with 27 points and seven assists. James Harden added 24 points and 12 helps.
Brooklyn stays without Kevin Durant, who is in the NBA’s Covid contact tracing protocols until in any event Friday in the wake of being presented to a group representative who tested positive for COVID-19 a week ago.
Detroit leaped out to an early double-digit lead and controlled the game for almost the whole 48 minutes. During a break in the first quarter, Harden seemed to have a lively discussion with DeAndre Jordan about the team’s defensive effort. Throughout the span of the game, Nash pulled Jordan aside a few times.
“I don’t think they were necessarily picking on him,” Nash said. “It’s an emotional sport. We find ourselves in the hole and then get a little emotional.”
Jordan, who said he didn’t remember what Harden had explicitly said, admitted he should have been exceptional overall defensively.
“I’ve gotta be better for us, defensively,” Jordan said. “We all have to be better. But I just take a little bit more ownership on that end of the ball because that is a thing that I love and a big part of why I think I’m out there for us. So we’ve gotta be better, but I take a lot of that.”
Since the Nets traded for James Harden in mid-January, they rank toward the end in defensive efficiency, as indicated by ESPN Stats and Information research. And keeping in mind that the Nets had the option to trim the Pistons’ lead down to single digits, they were always unable to overcome the hump.
“A lot of teams come out very comfortable against us,” Irving said. “And then that’s kind of the feel for the rest of the game is that we’re playing catchup, and that’s just not the way to play as a competitor just always down.”
“We just have to turn that corner. And we haven’t done it yet, but we will. And I’m telling you the league’s going to be on notice when that happens.”