Humphries delivers versus Suns
March, 25, 2013
By Mike Mazzeo | ESPNNewYork.com
Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY SportsKris Humphries (43) provided a boost off the bench for D-Will, Brook Lopez and the Nets.If Sunday night's performance is an indication of what's to come, Kris Humphries is going to be in the Brooklyn Nets' rotation to stay.
After sitting on the bench for eight games, Humphries followed up a solid effort Saturday night by scoring a season-high 17 points and grabbing eight rebounds in 28 minutes in his team's 102-100 victory over the Phoenix Suns.
"I got to the free-throw line early and got into a little bit of a rhythm," Humphries told the YES Network after the game. "I'm still trying to kick some rust from not playing for a while. I know I'm going to be pretty tired tomorrow."
Humphries' 17 points represented his highest total since he tallied 29 on April 16, 2012.
Humphries wasn't always sharp, amassing three air balls and a missed dunk on Sunday, but the Nets wouldn't have been able to avoid what would've been a terrible loss without their oft-maligned power forward. After the Nets blew a 16-point lead, Humphries delivered a clutch three-point play with 3:26 left to put them ahead 95-91, and they were able to hang on from there. The Nets (41-29) are now 3-1 on their eight-game circus road trip.
"You gotta stay in shape, be ready and try to figure out the flow of what's going on -- especially when you don't get in at all for an extended period of time," Humphries said. "My teammates got me involved early and we were able to win the game."
Deron Williams added 20 points -- 16 in the second half -- and 11 assists, while Brook Lopez chipped in 21 points, five rebounds and two blocks. With Humphries and C.J. Watson (14 points) leading the way, the Bench Mob produced 45 points.
"It's huge," coach P.J. Carlesimo told reporters in Phoenix, regarding the reserves' production. "You're gonna need your bench always -- especially in a back-to-back."
The Nets don't play again until Wednesday night. They hope Joe Johnson (quad), who sat out Sunday night's game, will be ready to go by then.
"A win feels better than a loss," Carlesimo said. "It's still a very good win. It wasn't pretty. It wasn't like we did 800 things well, but we found a way to get a win."