Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Home Sweet Home
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The New Jersey Nets wrapped up their five game home stand at 4-1, with Wednesday’s 93-88 win over the Memphis Grizzlies. Five Nets scored in double figures with every player on their 11 man active roster tallying a basket with the exception of forward Stephen Graham. The Nets continue their torrid shooting from the great beyond, splashing in 9 of their 17 three point attempts. Avery Johnson’s squad hit their stride late, outscoring Memphis 33-22 in the final stanza.
Shooting guards Anthony Morrow and Sasha Vujacic from the perimeter along with big men Brook Lopez and Kris Humphries in the paint proved too much for the Grizzlies to handle as their defense crumbled down the stretch. New Jersey’s fab four dropped in 64 combined points while shooting a blistering 25 of 47 from the field. Floor general Devin Harris scored 9 of his 13 points in the fourth quarter spurring New Jersey’s late rally.
With wins over Utah, Detroit, Cleveland and now Memphis, the Nets have gained some steam and find themselves a mere five games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the east. Five of New Jersey’s upcoming six opponents boast a sub .500 record, ushering in all the more reason for optimism in the Garden State. Albeit New Jersey’s hot streak has come against the league’s bottom dwellers, the Nets have played unselfish and fundamental team basketball.
This latest surge only confirms the notion that the Carmelo Anthony trade rumors disturbed the Nets chemistry and focus. On Friday, New Jersey departs for Indiana, a team that sits two games ahead in the race for the eighth seed. If New Jersey hopes to make a serious bid for a playoff spot, they will have to carry the momentum they’ve gained and string together wins against losing ball clubs.
Nets 102-Indiana 95 F
Brook Lopez 27 points 7 rebounds 2 blocks