Brooklyn Nets: Milwaukee Bucks

Rapid Reaction: Nets 107, Bucks 98

March, 1, 2014
Mar 1
The Brooklyn Nets took care of business Saturday night, beating the NBA’s worst team, the Milwaukee Bucks, 107-98 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

What it means: The Nets (28-29) finished off their six-game, 11-day circus road trip with a 4-2 record. If you count their loss to the Chicago Bulls before the All-Star break, they went 4-3 on their extended road trip overall. Either way, they came away with a winning record. This is the first time the Nets have gotten to within a game under .500 in five tries since Jan. 27.

Backcourt struggles: Deron Williams (15 points, four assists, three turnovers) opened up 3-for-4 from the field in the first quarter, but he appeared to injure his right hand/wrist while defending a driving Ramon Sessions early in the second quarter and went just 3-for-12 the rest of the way. Joe Johnson, reportedly playing with a severely jammed ring finger on his right hand, shot 2-for-9. Williams and Johnson both sat down the stretch as the reserves closed it out.

Bench steps up: Marcus Thornton had 25 points (13 in the second, 12 in the fourth) on 8-for-13 shooting in 23 minutes, while Andray Blatche added 19 points and 13 rebounds. Andrei Kirilenko, as usual, was all over the floor, collecting seven points, five assists, two rebounds, a steal and a block. Thornton hit two huge 3-pointers down the stretch to help the Nets keep the Bucks at bay.

No KG: Kevin Garnett (back spasms) sat out. Mason Plumlee started in his place but got into early foul trouble, which led to Jason Collins getting some meaningful minutes.

Up next: The Nets are off Sunday, then face the Bulls at Barclays Center Monday night.

W2W4: Nets at Bucks

February, 20, 2013
The Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks will battle Wednesday for the second time in as many nights -- this time at Bradley Center.

Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m.; here's what we'll be watching for:

HOW WILL D-WILL FEEL? Deron Williams played 45 minutes on Tuesday night, scoring 19 points, dishing out nine assists and turning the ball over six times. He said he didn't know how his inflamed ankles would feel the day after. Williams is expected to play, but for how long?

WHAT CAN THEY DO FOR AN ENCORE? The Nets snapped a 13-game losing streak to the Bucks, thanks to a game-winning buzzer beater in overtime from Joe Johnson. His game-tying 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter that sent the game into the extra session saved interim coach P.J. Carlesimo from having to answer some difficult questions about why he didn't play Brook Lopez for the majority of the fourth quarter.

Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis once again had their way with the Nets, combining for 52 points. Jennings is averaging 29.8 points in his past five matchups with the Nets.

Johnson is averaging 22.3 points per game during Brooklyn's current three-game winning streak.

HOW WILL BROOK RESPOND? Lopez said he "wasn't mentally there" in overtime after sitting for the majority of the fourth in favor of Andray Blatche. Lopez has averaged 24.0 points in his last three road games in Milwaukee. Will Carlesimo go back to him in crunch time? The Nets last won in Milwaukee on March 3, 2009.

W2W4: Nets vs. Bucks

February, 19, 2013
The Brooklyn Nets (31-22) begin the second half of their season Tuesday night with a home date against the Milwaukee Bucks (26-25). Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m. ET; here's what we'll be watching for:

RETURN OF D-WILL: Deron Williams returns to the lineup after a week's worth of rest. He missed the previous two games due to inflammation in both ankles. D-Will hasn't played up to his max contract all season. It'll be interesting to see if the rest did him any good. Reggie Evans, who missed shootaround due to illness, is probable to play.

MILWAUKEE'S BEST: The Bucks have won their past 13 games against the Nets, who last beat Milwaukee on March 3, 2009. The Bucks are 2-0 against Brooklyn this season. They led by 29 in the third quarter when the teams met at Barclays Center on Dec. 9. On Dec. 26, in Avery Johnson's final game as Nets coach, the Bucks won 108-93.

BETTER BACKCOURT: Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis Ellis have given Brooklyn fits this season. In that Dec. 9 win, they outscored D-Will and Joe Johnson 50-24. Williams did not play in the second game due to a bruised right wrist. Jennings has averaged 28.8 points against the Nets in the past four meetings.

Rapid Reaction: Bucks 108, Nets 93

December, 26, 2012

WHAT IT MEANS: Deron Williams may be having the worst season of his career, but the Brooklyn Nets clearly missed him on Wednesday night.

With Williams out for the first time in 2012-13, due to a bruised right wrist, the Nets were pummeled by the Milwaukee Bucks 108-93 at Bradley Center.

With the loss, Brooklyn (14-14) dropped to 3-10 in December and fell to .500 for the first time since Nov. 9, when they were 2-2.

The Bucks have beaten the Nets 13 straight times. Milwaukee had been held under 100 points in eight straight games, but erupted to shoot 47.6 percent and go 10-for-17 from 3-point range on Wednesday night.

IRON UNKIND: The Nets shot just 38.6 percent from the field and went 4-for-21 from 3-point range. They missed their first nine attempts from downtown, and went 0-for-8 from beyond the arc in the first half.

BROOKLYN’S BACKCOURT: C.J. Watson, who started in place of Williams, and Joe Johnson combined to go 7-for-27 from the field. They were outscored 45-21 by Brandon Jennings and Monte Ellis.

SECOND IS THE WORST: A day after being outscored 34-18 in the second quarter by the Boston Celtics, the Nets were outscored 33-18 in the second by Milwaukee. A 24-7 run by the Bucks to end the quarter gave the hosts a 13-point lead at the half.

DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK: The Nets trailed by 13 early in the fourth quarter, but used a 13-4 run to get right back in the game. Unfortunately, the Bucks countered with a 9-2 spurt to get it right back to 10 and that was it.

NEMESIS: Ersan Ilyasova, who the Nets once coveted in the offseason, had been struggling -- until Wednesday night. Ilyasova finished with 17 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three steals.

FIVE-SPOT: The Nets got 35 points, 15 rebounds and six blocks from their center tandem of Brook Lopez (21 points, 10 rebounds, three blocks) and Andray Blatche (14 points, five rebounds, three blocks, three steals). Blatche had his right shoulder worked on by trainer Tim Walsh in the fourth quarter.

UP NEXT: Nets vs. Bobcats, 7 p.m.

W2W4: Nets at Bucks

December, 26, 2012
The Brooklyn Nets are reeling -- they have lost nine of their last 12 games. They’ll have a chance to get back on track in the second half of a back-to-back against the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night (8 p.m. ET). Here’s what we’ll be watching for:

LUCKY 13? The Nets are coming off a miserable Christmas performance against the Boston Celtics in which they had a season-high tying 20 turnovers and scored just 76 points -- their second-lowest point total this season.

The Nets have lost 12 straight games to the Bucks, including five straight on the road. The last time the two teams played was on Dec. 9 in Brooklyn and the Nets scored a season-low 31 first-half points and trailed by as many as 29.

BACKCOURT TURNAROUND: In that Dec. 9 game, Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis outscored Deron Williams and Joe Johnson 50-24.

D-Will and Iso Joe combined for just 22 in the team’s most recent loss to the Celtics. Williams is still banged up, though Johnson, despite his bad performance Tuesday, is averaging 19.4 points in his last eight games. If the Nets are going to win this game, chances are their $190 million backcourt needs to have a big night.

STARTING 5: The Nets started Reggie Evans at power forward against the Bucks and jumped out to an 11-2 lead, only to see it disappear thanks to a 17-2 Milwaukee counter that effectively ended things. Brooklyn has recently been starting Gerald Wallace at the four and Keith Bogans at small forward. That small lineup worked wonders on Sunday against the Philadelphia 76ers, but didn’t on Tuesday, prompting Nets coach Avery Johnson to go with Evans to start the second half in place of Bogans. Johnson has been searching for the right rotation all season. What will he end up settling on Wednesday night?

W2W4: Nets vs. Bucks

December, 9, 2012
The Brooklyn Nets will have a chance to end a season-high three-game losing streak. Here's what we'll be watching for when the Milwaukee Bucks visit Barclays Center on Sunday night:

DDDD-FENCE: The Nets (11-7) have been lacking energy on the defensive end of the floor. In their last three games, they've given up an average of 109.3 points on 53.8 percent shooting. Completely unacceptable. Deron Williams told reporters Saturday that the team has no one to blame but itself. Led by Monta Ellis (18.4 ppg) and Brandon Jennings (16.7 ppg), the Bucks come in averaging 96.8 points per game. Milwaukee (9-9, 3-7 in its last 10) is going to play an up-tempo type of game, given its backcourt. But Brooklyn needs to play at its slower pace for the majority of the 48 minutes in order to snap its skid.

BROOK-LOST: Andray Blatche has been exceptional in place of Brook Lopez, averaging 18.8 points and 10.8 rebounds in his last four games. Still, the Nets clearly miss Lopez on defense, as evidenced by the numbers above. They also miss the Blatche-Reggie Evans frontcourt combo coming off the bench. Blatche is averaging only 0.3 blocks per game since Lopez went down with a mild right foot sprain.

FINALLY BACK, COURT? Joe Johnson erupted for a season-high 32 points on Friday, three nights after Williams erupted for a season-high 33. It'd be key for the Nets if both Johnson and Williams became more consistent -- especially if they did so in the same games. The Nets are tough to beat when this duo is delivering efficiently and effectively.

WHAT COULD'VE BEEN: The Nets had pursued Ersan Ilyasova during the offseason to fill their void at power forward. But Ilyasova ended up signing a multiyear deal to stay with the Bucks, and hasn't been his normal productive self since. He's shooting just 37.8 percent from the field and averaging 8.4 points.

Humphries' career night goes to waste

March, 12, 2012
Kris Humphries can never be accused of failing to give maximum effort on the court.

"After games, he's totally exhausted," Nets coach Avery Johnson said after his 27-year-old power forward scored a career-high 31 points, grabbed 18 rebounds and blocked three shots over 42 minutes in Monday night's 105-99 loss to the Bucks.

"He leaves it all out there on the floor. He's a great example of just playing until your dead tired."

AP Photo/Mel EvansKris Humphries

In 40 games with the Nets this season, Humphries has logged 1,394 minutes and 44 seconds, and ranks second on the team to point guard Deron Williams in minutes per contest (34:52).

"It wasn't tough [Monday night]," said Humphries, who became just the fifth Net since 1985-86 to go for 31 and 18 in a single game. "But on back-to-backs it's pretty tough."

Sure is. But you wouldn't know it watching Humphries.

On Monday night, he was a beast on the interior. Humphries, who shot 11-for-15 from the field and 9-for-12 from the free throw line, recorded 13 points and six rebounds in the first quarter, and by the end of the first half he had amassed his 18th double-double of the season: 21 points and 10 boards.

"He got off to a good start and was real focused," Johnson said. "Guys started going to him early and he made some really incredible blocks. He's playing on both ends of the floor."

On Feb. 19, Humphries was outplayed by Milwaukee hybrid forward Ersan Ilyasova, who scored 29 points and grabbed an NBA season-high-tying 25 rebounds. Humphries was determined not to let "Turkish Thunder" go "Ersane" again.

"He played great last time," Humphries said. "I wanted to make sure he didn't come out and get momentum and have that kind of night."

Ilyasova didn't, scoring just four points and snagging three boards in 24 minutes.

The Nets (14-29, 4-15 home) went right at him from the opening possession, getting Humphries a look in the post, and he got a 5-foot hook to go. That set the tone for what should've been a different outcome had the Nets not turned the ball over nine times in the third quarter and allowed Milwaukee (18-24) to go on a 17-2 run spanning the end of the third to the early part of the fourth, which turned a nine-point lead into a six-point deficit.

Humphries' highlight of the evening was his steal and slam that gave the Nets a 48-36 edge in the second quarter. He scooped up a loose ball and went coast-to-coast, taking it himself on a 2-on-1 fast break and finishing with a rim-rocking, one-handed jam.

"I got it, I just pushed it out, and then I was looking for someone and I realized, there's only one guy back. And it got to the point where he [wasn't] gonna take the charge, so I just said, 'Let me try and dunk this,'" Humphries said. "It worked out."

Humphries signed a one-year, $8 million contract in the offseason, so he could be a candidate to be dealt by Thursday's NBA trading deadline. But he has veto power because he'd have to give up his Bird Rights in order to be moved.

Using a bridge analogy after Monday's morning shootaround, Humphries (13.6 ppg, 10.7 rpg) essentially said he'd be willing to waive his no-trade clause if the situation was right. And there's plenty of contenders who would love to have a player of his ilk.

But for now, he’s a Net, and Johnson and Humphries' teammates aren't going to complain about that.

Rapid Reaction: Bucks 105, Nets 99

March, 12, 2012

Recap | Box score | Photos

WHAT IT MEANS: Kris Humphries' career night went to waste. The Nets' power forward had a career-high 31 points and pulled down 18 rebounds, but his team blew a 12-point lead and fell to the Bucks, 105-99 on Monday night at Prudential Center. The Nets are now 14-29 overall, 4-15 at home and have lost two games in a row.

TURNING POINT: The Bucks closed the third quarter on a 9-0 run, then scored eight of the first 10 points of the fourth to turn a nine-point deficit into a six-point lead.

ADVANTAGE, KRIS: For Humphries, it was his 18th double-double this season. He had 21 points and 10 rebounds in the first half alone. He finished 11-for-15 from the field and 9-for-12 from the free throw line in 41 minutes. Counterpart Ersan Ilyasova, who torched the Nets to the turn of 29 points and 25 rebounds in their last meeting, had just four points and three rebounds in 24 minutes.

FILLING IN: Starting for the second straight game in place of Deron Williams (strained right calf, day to day), backup point guard Jordan Farmar struggled, shooting just 7-for-18 from the field and getting abused by Brandon Jennings (34 points, seven rebounds, seven assists).

DOUBLE-G: Gerald Green hit his first three shots, but went just 1-for-8 the rest of the way, finishing with 11 points. He did rise high above the rim for an alley-oop jam.

STARTING STRONG: The Nets made seven of their first 10 shots, shot 50 percent in the first quarter and led 32-27. Humphries had 13 points and six rebounds in the opening period.

BOLD PLAY OF THE GAME: Hump got a steal, went coast-to-coast and finished off a powerful one-handed slam on the other end that gave the Nets a 48-36 lead in the second quarter.

STAT OF THE NIGHT: The Nets went 4-for-17 from 3-point range.

CHAMPS ARE HERE: Super Bowl champions Justin Tuck and Ahmad Bradshaw of the Giants sat courtside.

UP NEXT: Nets vs. Raptors, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Rapid Reaction: Bucks 115, Nets 92

January, 8, 2011

Recap | Box score | Photos

WHAT IT MEANS: One of those closed-door, players-only meetings is in order. Some accountability would be nice. And that Carmelo Anthony blockbuster trade needs to get done. Now. Not in a day, a week, a month. Now! Because, right now, the New Jersey Nets are a bad basketball team.

As if that wasn't painfully obvious before.

The Nets put up their second clunker in as many nights, getting obliterated by the Milwaukee Bucks, 115-92 at the Prudential Center on Saturday. Other than a couple emphatic dunks by rookies Derrick Favors and Ben Uzoh, there were no positives the Nets could take away from the blowout. Their defense, which allowed the Bucks to shoot 58.3 percent from the floor, was atrocious. As was Brook Lopez (five points, one rebound) They brought no energy. They were out-hustled. And that's not going to make head coach Avery Johnson happy -- especially considering his favorite football team, the New Orleans Saints, were eliminated from the playoffs.

New Jersey (10-27 overall, 7-10 home) clearly missed injured point guard Devin Harris, who sat out with a right quad contusion. His 16.6 points, 6.8 assists and consummate professionalism and leadership were sorely missed on the court.

TURNING POINT: The first quarter. All 12 minutes of it. That's all it took for the game to be decided.

The Nets trailed 28-15 at the end of the opening stanza. The reason? Where do we start. First off, they couldn't make shots. They made just seven of 20 attempts from the field. Second, they allowed the NBA's worst offense to shoot 62.5 percent. And finally, Lopez was nonexistent. Despite the absence of Bucks center Andrew Bogut from the lineup, the 22-year-old center went just 1-for-3 from the floor with no rebounds in 9 minutes, 27 seconds of action in the first quarter.

The Nets ended up cutting a 15-point deficit to seven late in the second quarter, only to see Earl Boykins knock down a 3 and follow a Kris Humphries jumper with one of his own to make it a 55-45 Bucks lead at the half. The Nets never got within single digits again the rest of the way. Milwaukee started the third quarter on a 12-2 run to take a 20-point lead. That's when the boos started. They didn't stop. The fans who paid to witness this one in-person deserve their money back. And those that were watching on television probably turned on the Jets-Colts game. For the record, it got to as bad as 26.

STAR OF THE GAME: Normally in an outcome like this, the home team doesn't deserve one. But Humphries quietly put up a team-high 22 points and eight rebounds off the bench. Backup point guard Jordan Farmar also deserves praise. He put up 20 points and added a game-high 10 assists while starting in Harris' place.

UP NEXT: A flight to the left coast. The Nets went 1-3 in their first trip out west. They'll try to at least equal that record during their second one -- another four-gamer -- which begins in Phoenix against the Suns on Wednesday. The Nets are a lowly 3-17 away from The Rock.



Brook Lopez
20.7 0.9 0.5 31.4
ReboundsK. Garnett 6.6
AssistsD. Williams 6.1
StealsD. Williams 1.5
BlocksB. Lopez 1.8