The Brooklyn Nets found a way to close out a game in the fourth quarter Sunday, defeating the Detroit Pistons 87-83 at Barclays Center.
The Nets outscored the Pistons 28-16 in the fourth quarter, rallying back from 67-61 to win their third game in a row at Barclays Center. Head coach Lionel Hollins said it wasn’t his team’s best performance from the opening tip-off, but that his guys stepped up when it mattered most.
“Tonight, the stretch that we played well was the stretch that we needed to play well,” Hollins said. “In the fourth quarter we held them to 16 points. It was 28-16 in our favor in the fourth quarter and that was the ball game.”
The Nets jumped out on a 22-9 run to start the fourth quarter, erasing the Pistons’ eight-point lead. Wayne Ellington provided the spark Brooklyn needed, scoring the Nets first seven points of the quarter, part of a season-high, 12-point effort.
“I cracked the code tonight,” Ellington said. “To get out there and make a couple shots in a row gave me a bunch of confidence.”
After Ellington put the game within reach, the Nets starters came through. Brook Lopez – who finished one steal shy of a 5x5 game – was 3-of-13 in the first three quarters, but shot 3-of-5 in the fourth. Thaddeus Young (19 points, 9-for-12) had five of his 10 rebounds in the final quarter, and Jarrett Jack hit three big shots in the final minute, tying the game 83-83 before dropping a pair of free throws with 14.1 seconds left, putting the Nets up 86-83.
“Resiliency,” Jack said. “It wasn’t the prettiest… but at the end of the day as long as it goes in the W column, it’s okay.”
The Pistons’ 83 points allowed were the fewest allowed by the Nets this season. The Nets got a strong defensive contribution from Lopez, who had a season-high six blocks, four assists as well as tying a career-high with four steals to go with nine rebounds.
“We knew we had to do it on the defensive end, get stops there and keep them off the offensive glass,” Lopez said. “I was just trying to give more help to the guards, when [Reggie] Jackson was coming off and trusting that our weak side would be there to help on [Andre] Drummond’s roll.”
Jackson led the Pistons with 21 points, while Drummond scored 20 points and 18 rebounds. Individually Drummond had more offensive rebounds (10) than the entire Nets team (7). As a team, the Nets out-rebounded the Pistons 16-7 in the fourth quarter.
The Nets will play seven of their next eight games at Barclays Center, starting with the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night. Tip-off is at 7:30 p.m.