Notebook: Nets 101, Celtics 93



Posted Apr 11, 2013 12:29 AM

Brian Robb, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Deron Williams had a game-high 29 points and 12 assists, as the Brooklyn Nets earned a road season sweep of the Boston Celtics with a 101-93 victory. Brook Lopez added 21 points, while Joe Johnson chipped in with 20 in the balanced offensive effort for the visitors, which helped Brooklyn build and maintain a double-digit lead for nearly the entire second half. Paul Pierce had 23 points in the loss, hurting Boston's chances at moving up in the Eastern Conference standings before the postseason. With the win, Brooklyn takes the season series 3-1 over Boston.

QUOTABLE: ""I mean this was a big win for us and I think these next five games we'll be able to tell where we're at too. We've been up and down a lot this season but these last two wins have been something to build on so hopefully we can not take any more steps back and just keep moving forward."
-- Williams

THE STAT: The Nets were the aggressors throughout the entire first half on the offensive end, earning a 10-0 edge in free throw attempts over the opening 24 minutes.

TURNING POINT: Brooklyn broke open the back-and-forth contest in the final minutes of the first half, turning a one-point lead into a double-digit advantage with a 14-3 run. The Celtics were unable to recover from that deficit for the entire second half.

GOOD MOVE: With Avery Bradley saddled with foul trouble for nearly the entire contest, Brooklyn went to their star point guard early and often on the offensive end. Williams took advantage of Boston missing their best backcourt defender by punishing the Celtics' defense with his scoring and passing.

QUOTABLE II: He's playing exceptionally well. He's been as good as any point guard in the league the month and a half, two months after the break. With Joe (Johnson) kind of still rounding back into form from his foot injury, he's carried us. Lot of nights we just let him roll and he's been getting it done for us."
-- Jerry Stackhouse on Williams.

HOT: Pierce. Boston's captain single-handedly kept the Celtics in the game during the third quarter. Pierce scored 13 of his 23 points in the frame, on 3-of-4 shooting from the field and seven trips to the free throw line.

NOT: Jeff Green. The hybrid forward has struggled in his past two games since the return of Kevin Garnett to the starting lineup. Green settled for jumpers early, which failed to go down as he missed 13 of his 17 shot attempts on the evening. Green also struggled to slow down Johnson (20 points) on the defensive end.

FANTASY SPOTLIGHT: Williams. Brooklyn's floor general continued his stellar play during the second half of this season by posting his 20th double-double of the year. In the month of April, Williams is averaging 25 points and 7.9 assists per game.

QUOTABLE III: "I think were focusing on too much of the playoffs that's not here yet. I think we need to focus and lock in on these games that we have left and put the energy and effort behind that. I think were stressing too much on the future, and the futures' not here yet. We need to take this one game at a time and then start to prepare for whatever's after this."
- Kevin Garnett

NOTABLE: Gerald Wallace was carried off the floor in the second quarter due to a left heel contusion. He did not return. ... Brooklyn led by as many as 19 points in the second half. ... With the victory, the Nets now hold a 3 and 1/2 game lead for the 4th seed over Chicago, with four games to play. ... Brandon Bass scored all 10 of his points in the first half. ...The Celtics maintained a three-game lead over the Bucks for the 7th seed despite the loss after Milwaukee fell to Orlando in overtime. ... Brooklyn shot 66.7 percent in the second quarter. ... Reggie Evans finished with 14 rebounds. It was the seventh straight game he has collected 13 or more rebounds.

UP NEXT: For Brooklyn, Friday @ Indiana, Saturday @ Orlando, Tuesday vs. Indiana. For Boston, Friday @ Miami, Saturday @ Orlando, Tuesday vs. Indiana