Rapid Reaction: Spurs 106, Nets 96

February, 25, 2011
2/25/11
10:57
PM ET
Recap | Box score | Photos

WHAT IT MEANS: All-Star point guard Deron Williams' debut as a New Jersey Net didn't exactly go the way he hoped it would. Williams was held to only 14 points on 5-for-13 shooting as the Nets lost in San Antonio on Friday night. Despite struggling to put the ball in the basket, Williams did contribute a game-high 12 assists for New Jersey (17-41), which dropped its fourth straight game, and first following the All-Star break. Meanwhile, the Spurs (48-10), the NBA's best team, improved to 27-2 at home. The Nets fell to a dismal 4-26 on the road.

TURNING POINT: When the Spurs closed the third quarter on an 18-6 run, turning a four-point lead into a commanding 16-point edge. Tim Duncan sparked the surge with a dunk inside, and George Hill capped it, beating the buzzer with a corner 3-pointer that bounced high off the front rim before dropping through the net.

PLAYER OF THE GAME: Anthony Morrow. The 25-year-old shooting guard came off the bench to notch a game-high 25 points for New Jersey. Morrow had the touch from the perimeter all night long, connecting on his first five shots en route to a 7-for-11 performance from the field. He was also 8-for-9 from the free throw line and added five rebounds.

BREAKING IT DOWN: Like most players, it's going to take Williams some time to get acclimated with the Nets' system. The two-time All-Star struggled mightily in the first quarter, going 0-for-4 from the floor with a pair of turnovers. He even injured his right wrist on a hard drive to the hoop late in the opening stanza. Williams finally recorded his first field goal when he converted a layup inside with 2:00 left in the second quarter. He did show flashes throughout, working the pick-and-roll game well with Kris Humprhies, and even displaying some offensive prowess late in the fourth. Williams had 11 of his 14 points after the intermission.

FLYING IN: Mikhail Prohkorov attended his first-ever road game as owner of the Nets. He was skiing in Vancouver, but made the trek to San Antonio so that he could watch Williams in his first game as a Net. Williams, of course, did a lot more flying than Prohkorov. This week alone, Williams made three flights and traveled more than 3,000 miles -- from Dallas to Salt Lake City to New Jersey and then to San Antonio -- after he was acquired by the Nets in a blockbuster deal with the Utah Jazz. The Nets are 5-3 with Prohkorov in attendance.

THE DIFFERENCE: Much like it did in the Nets' 17-point loss to the Spurs in New Jersey, it came on the interior. Duncan and DeJuan Blair each amassed 17 points and six rebounds on 8-for-11 shooting.

UP NEXT: The Nets finish off their Texas Two-Step on Saturday night when they head to Houston to take on the Rockets. Williams will make his home debut with the Nets on Monday night against Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns.

Mike Mazzeo

ESPN New York Writer

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Joe Johnson
PTS AST STL MIN
16.7 3.8 1.0 34.9
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsK. Garnett 8.0
AssistsD. Williams 6.8
StealsD. Williams 1.1
BlocksB. Lopez 1.6