Tuesday, February 28, 2012
At the half: Nets 56, Mavs 45
By Jeff Caplan
DALLAS -- The Mavericks might want to splash some water on the face at halftime. The New Jersey Nets are feeling good and this could be trouble.
Two huge issues plagued Dallas in the second quarter. First, with Deron Williams taking nearly the first six minutes of the period off, the Nets expanded their five-point first-quarter lead to six. Then, Brook Lopez went off for 13 consecutive points and 15 in the quarter to give him a season-high 21 in the game. He's 10-of-15 from the floor and absolutely killing Brendan Haywood.
That vaunted Dallas defense is being shredded by these 10-win Nets, who are shooting 50 percent from the floor despite just 5-of-16 shooting from beyond the arc. The Nets have 24 points in the paint. Williams has 10 points and eight assists. Anthony Morrow, who hit a buzzer-beating jumper to end the half has eight points as does Kris Humphries.
Dirk Nowitzki leads Dallas with 11 points on 3-of-7 shooting. He missed three consecutive free throws in the period, missing two, then getting an extra attempt on a lane violation, but he missed that one, too.
Haywood, while getting skewered defensively, has nine points and six rebounds. Jason Terry is 2-of-7 for five points.
Dallas' eight first-half turnovers have resulted in 13 Nets points and get this, the Nets have 21 fastbreak points to the Mavs' 5.