BROOKLYN – The snap you heard wasn’t a dried out branch of your Christmas tree cracking. It was the sound of the Brooklyn Nets' longest winning streak of the season getting snapped.
The Nets had a chance to win their fourth straight game of the season and close to within a game of .500 against an Indiana Pacers team that came in with a 10-20 record, including an ugly loss Friday night to the lowly Detroit Pistons.
No Paul George. No Lance Stephenson. No excuses.
But the Nets turned in a woeful offensive performance Saturday night in Barclays Center and dropped a 110-85 decision, tying their worst loss of the season. The Nets led 51-50 in the third quarter but the tone was set in the first quarter when the Nets posted just one assist.
During the team’s season-long three-game winning streak, they converted 124 field goals off of 69 assists. That ball movement was nowhere to be found.
The Nets fell to 13-16. The Pacers improved to 11-20. The Nets host the Sacramento Kings Monday night.
KEY STAT: The Pacers bench outscored the Nets bench, 52-16.
KEY STRETCH: Kevin Garnett knocked down a wing jumper giving the Nets a 51-50 lead early in the third quarter. The Pacers countered by outscoring the Nets 29-14 over the remainder of the period. They took a 79-65 lead into the fourth quarter.
KEY PLAY: After Garnett’s jumper, David West countered with a driving layup 18 seconds later to give the Pacers a 52-51 lead and spark a 29-14 Indiana surge.
NETS GAINS: Sergey Karasev had a solid all-around game with a career-high 13 points, three rebounds and one assist. He is not a great defensive player but he is a smart one and that, more than his offense, will keep him in Coach Lionel Hollins’ favor.
TALK: Deron Williams and Brook Lopez struggled coming off the bench. They were a combined 2-of-12 shooting. Williams is working his way back from a right calf injury. Lopez is coming back from a strained lower back.
“They didn’t play very well,’’ said Coach Lionel Hollins. “They have to play better for us to be better.’’