The Nets are looking to build off a 116-106 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday night. Led by Brook Lopez’s 31-point effort, five Nets scored in double-digits Sunday. Lopez credited the team’s focus as one of the keys to the win, while Interim Head Coach Tony Brown said sharing the ball and pushing the pace up the floor were also keys.
“Our guys heed the message, shared the ball, moving, moving bodies, and the floor opened up for us,” Brown said. “I thought for the most part our pace was great. Our two point guards were pushing it up the floor. There were some fast break situations that I thought we probably could have converted, but I just like the fact that we were probing and looking and the ball was moving up the floor.”
The Nets and Heat are 1-1 against each other this season, with the road team winning on both occasions. Brooklyn took the most recent meeting 111-105, as the Nets overcame a 58-44 deficit at halftime. Wayne Ellington tied a career-high with seven 3-pointers, finishing the night with 26 points. Ellington was inserted into the Nets’ starting lineup for the second half, along with Shane Larkin, who had seven assists in the third quarter, helping spark the Nets’ comeback.
Andrea Bargnani (sick) missed Monday’s practice and is questionable for Tuesday’s game. Bargnani saw limited action (7:57) in Sunday’s win, scoring four points (2-of-2).
The Miami Heat beat the Chicago Bulls 89-84 on Monday night to snap a four-game losing streak. The win, which was powered by a 28-point night from Dwyane Wade and a fourth-quarter comeback effort from Wade and Chris Bosh, snapped a four-game losing streak for the Heat.
Whether the win against the fourth-place Bulls gets the Heat back on track remains to be seen. Their four-game skid wasn’t kind to them, as they lost all four by double-digits and their 89 points was the most they had scored in five games.
To be fair, the Heat are dealing with injuries as of late. Hassan Whiteside, the Heat’s best rebounder (11.2 rpg), shot-blocker (3.9 bpg) and most efficient shooter (61.3 FG%), has missed two games since leaving Wednesday’s game with an oblique injury. Chris Andersen (sore left knee) and Goran Dragic (strained left calf) also missed Monday’s game. Luol Deng missed Friday’s game after being poked in the eye, but returned Monday in Chicago.
Chris Bosh holds the distinction of being the only Miami Heat player to have played in all 45 games this season. Bosh has been a healthy contributor in both senses of the word. He’s averaging 19.1 ppg – the most on the Heat – and 7.7 rpg. Bosh had a line of 18 points, seven boards and three assists in the Heat’s slump-busting win over the Bulls Monday.