Nets Find Themselves in a 109-93 Road Win Over the Raptors

TORONTO – After losing consecutive games on the West Coast by more than 30 points, the Brooklyn Nets appeared headed to a disastrous season.

But Brooklyn kept working, kept believing, and after Wednesday night’s 109-93 win over the Toronto Raptors, maybe it’s time for Nets fans to believe too.

The Nets have posted consecutive wins for the first time since Dec. 29-Jan. 2, when they won three straight. And the Nets didn’t do it against bottom feeders.

They beat the Los Angeles Clippers, 102-100, on Monday night to avenge a 39-point loss. And in Air Canada Centre, the Nets avenged two losses to the Raptors, the last one a 122-120 overtime defeat last Friday in Barclays Center.

“I just told the coaches, it’s very humbling to see your team start to get it,” said Coach Lionel Hollins. “You fight ‘em and fight ‘em and yell at them and coax them and hug them. You’re doing all kinds of stuff and all of a sudden the lights come on. And they start playing for each other and believing in each other.”

The Nets blew a five-point lead in that overtime loss to Toronto, the first place team in the Atlantic Division. This time, when the Raptors trimmed a 10-point deficit to three, the Nets simply took over the game, breaking the Raptors and sending fans to the exits.

The Nets (20-28) had five players in double figures, led by Jarrett Jack’s 24 and Alan Anderson’s 22. They had 24 assists on 39 field goals. The Nets had just nine turnovers.

The Nets host the Knicks on Friday in Barclays Center, their last home game until March.

KEY PLAY: With 6:16 left, Kyle Lowry drove the lane and went in for what appeared to be an uncontested layup. Brook Lopez swatted it into the third row. On the ensuing possession, Bojan Bogdanovic buried a 3 for a 98-82 lead.

KEY STRETCH: After the Raptors had sliced a 10-point deficit to three late in the third quarter, the Nets responded with a 26-13 surge to break the Raptors.

STAR: The Nets have been searching for a fifth starter all season. Lionel Hollins might have finally found his man. Alan Anderson, known for his toughness and defense, had a season-high 22 points on 7-of-9 shooting.

KEY STAT: Once a bugaboo, the Nets have been much better with the basketball. They had 24 assists and just nine turnovers.

NETS GAINS: Nets’ advance scout Jim Sann returned home from the hospital on Wednesday after suffering a minor heart attack before practice began on Sunday.

For the second time this season, Nets trainer Tim Walsh took outstanding measures to save a player. He used CPR to revive Sann, who went into cardiac arrest. Assistant trainers Lloyd Beckett and Alessandro Oliveira and team massage therapist John Rink assisted Walsh.

Walsh, along with team physician Dr. Michael Farber, possibly saved forward Mirza Teletovic’s life when they insisted he get a CT scan of his chest after experiencing shortness of breath during a game against the Los Angeles Clippers on Jan. 22. The test showed Teletovic, who is expected to make a full recovery, had blood clots in his lungs.

TALK: Jarrett Jack on the Nets playing better ball of late: “This is the fun part of the season: the unknown. You never know when all those hours of practice, or film sessions, when are they really going to come together and materialize and you’re going to hit that stride, when you’re going to start just playing consistent positive basketball? Hopefully this is that stride for us.”