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Thursday, April 24, 2014
Starting Five: Increase KG's minutes?

By Mike Mazzeo

Should Kevin Garnett play more?

It was the hot question following the Brooklyn Nets' 100-95 loss to the Toronto Raptors in Game 2.

Garnett has logged 39 minutes so far in the series, and the Nets have outscored the Raptors by 17 (90-73) when he's on the floor. In his 57 minutes on the bench, the Raptors have outscored the Nets by 15 (114-99).

Increasing KG's minutes certainly makes a lot of sense.

But here’s why a bump in Garnett’s minutes seems unlikely. Garnett has played just seven games since returning from back spasms. His minute counts in those games: 13, 17, 18, 19, 15, 20, 19. Garnett has not played more than 20 minutes in a game since Feb. 13 in Chicago (25). Nets coach Jason Kidd has said numerous times that he would not extend the 37-year-old’s minutes above his regular-season average (20.5)

Maybe Kidd elects to change his mind. If the Raptors go up 2-1 or 3-1, you’d think he’d have to. Desperate times, you’d think, would call for desperate measures.

Or maybe not.

Question: Should Kidd play Garnett more? Let us know in the comments section below.

In case you missed it: The Nets’ starters have been much better than their bench; Joe Johnson is going to have to figure out Landry Fields; and Brooklyn is ready to come home.

Stat to know: When a best-of-seven series is tied 1-1, the Game 3 winner goes on to win the series 76.8 percent of the time (152-46).

Up next: The Nets practice on Thursday.