Nets vs. Mavericks: Brooklyn Opens Up 2020 in Dallas

Nets closed 2019 as one of NBA's top defensive teams in December

DALLAS — The loss in Minnesota on Monday night that dropped the Brooklyn Nets to 16-16 and sent them into 2020 on a three-game losing streak was notable for being out of character for the extended period the team has been without Kyrie Irving and Caris LeVert. After surrendering a nine-point lead in the fourth quarter, the Nets gave up 19 points in the five-minute overtime, allowing Minnesota to make 7-of-10 shots.

In the month of December, the Nets were one of the NBA’s top defensive teams, ranking third in defensive rating (104.2), second in defensive effective field goal percentage (48.0), and second in opponent field goal percentage (41.3).

That performance had been the foundation of Brooklyn winning 12 of its first 18 games while playing without both Irving and LeVert. Frustration with the recent performance is relative to what the Nets had done over the previous five weeks.

“That’s how much I think of this team and these guys and how well we were playing,” said head coach Kenny Atkinson. “The standards have been raised. They raised the standards themselves, and for some reason, we’ve lost our mojo and I’m not sure why. Trust me, it’s not about the three losses, it’s not about dramatizing the loss. It’s more about the way we’re playing the game right now, that our process isn’t where it should be right now.”

The counter to Brooklyn’s defensive play over the last month is the struggles on offense. During that same stretch, the Nets have been 28th in the league in offensive rating (104.1) and effective field goal percentage (48.9) and last in 3-point field goal percentage (30.9).

“When I look back on (Monday’s game), I thought it was more, some of our decision-making quite honestly,” said Atkinson. “Not just in the pick-and-roll, in drive-and-kick, I thought we didn’t make the best decisions. Lengthy film session to take a look at it. I always say this, 70 percent of our time or even more is spent on the defense. It’s little bit on me, we’ve got to pay more attention to offense and helping these guys out.”

CARIS LEVERT CLOSING IN

Caris LeVert is out for the finale of this three-game road trip in Dallas on Thursday, but the swingman has been on the road with the team and participated fully in practice on Wednesday.

“I’m really close to playing,” said LeVert. “I feel good, my body feels good, so I can’t wait to get out there and help the team.”

LeVert’s return should give a boost that the Brooklyn offense needs. Kenny Atkinson described him as a “swiss army knife” who can slot into multiple positions, but there is an obvious need for point guard play behind Spencer Dinwiddie. After running through the team practice covering some plays and sets, LeVert stuck around for an additional workout.

“It’s more rhythm,” said Atkinson. “I just think it’s a different deal and it’s a little bit my philosophy that guys need a certain amount of contact and a certain amount of play to get their rhythm, but we’re close.”

ABOUT THE MAVERICKS

The Mavericks are 21-12 after dropping their last two games to the Lakers and Thunder. Led by Luka Doncic, Dallas has one of the most effective offenses in the NBA. The Mavericks are first in offensive rating (114.9), fourth in points per game (116.3), and fifth in effective field goal percentage (54.1).

Dallas is aggressive from 3-point range, ranking second in 3-pointers made (15.1) and attempted (41.5) while shooting 36.4 percent. Possession is a weapon for the Mavs; they’re third in rebounds per game (48.1) and they turn it over just 13.1 times per game, the second lowest rate in the league.

Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson called the Mavericks “the best offensive team in the league” after Brooklyn’s practice session on Thursday afternoon.

Doncic, last season’s Rookie of the Year, leads Dallas across the board with 29.0 points per game, 9.5 rebounds per game and 8.9 assists per game. He’s third in the NBA in both points and assists. Kristaps Porzingis averages 17.9 points and 9.4 rebounds per game.

“I think his IQ, understanding the game, is what really stands out,” said Atkinson. “I would say his strength. Guys kind of bounce off him. Once he gets a straight line drive, it’s tough to get him off his line. His maturity and, I know he got into it the other night, but it’s just kind of his bravado. He acts like a star at such a young age. It’s something you have or you don’t have. He’s got it.”

Brooklyn Nets Stat Leaders

Upcoming Home Games

2020-21 Season

Preseason

  • home game
    SundaySun Dec 13 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 119-114

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Irving
    18PTS
    Kyrie Irving
    D. Jordan
    7RBS
    DeAndre Jordan
    S. Dinwiddie
    7ASTS
    Spencer Dinwiddie
    YES Network, NBA TV
    Watch Game
  • away game
    FridayFri Dec 18 TD Garden, Boston, MA
    W 113-89

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    25PTS
    Kevin Durant
    J. Allen
    11RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    D. Jordan
    5ASTS
    DeAndre Jordan
    YES Network, ESPN2
    Watch Game

Regular Season

  • home game
    TuesdayTue Dec 22 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 125-99

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Irving
    26PTS
    Kyrie Irving
    D. Jordan
    11RBS
    DeAndre Jordan
    C. LeVert
    5ASTS
    Caris LeVert
    TNT, TNT OTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    FridayFri Dec 25 TD Garden, Boston, MA
    W 123-95

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Irving
    37PTS
    Kyrie Irving
    J. Allen
    11RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    K. Irving
    8ASTS
    Kyrie Irving
    ABCWFAN-FM
    Watch Game
  • away game
    SundaySun Dec 27 Spectrum Center, Charlotte, NC
    L 104-106

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    29PTS
    Kevin Durant
    J. Allen
    14RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    K. Irving
    6ASTS
    Kyrie Irving
    YES Network, NBA TV
    Watch Game
  • home game
    MondayMon Dec 28 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    L 111-116OT1

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    C. LeVert
    28PTS
    Caris LeVert
    J. Allen
    15RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    C. LeVert
    11ASTS
    Caris LeVert
    YES Network, NBA TVWCBS 880 AM
    Watch Game
  • home game
    WednesdayWed Dec 30 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 145-141

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    33PTS
    Kevin Durant
    J. Allen
    13RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    K. Durant
    8ASTS
    Kevin Durant
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    FridayFri Jan 01 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    L 96-114

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    28PTS
    Kevin Durant
    K. Irving
    11RBS
    Kyrie Irving
    K. Durant
    4ASTS
    Kevin Durant
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    SundaySun Jan 03 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    L 122-123

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Irving
    30PTS
    Kyrie Irving
    K. Durant
    11RBS
    Kevin Durant
    K. Irving
    10ASTS
    Kyrie Irving
    YES Network, NBA TVWCBS 880 AM
    Watch Game
  • home game
    TuesdayTue Jan 05 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 130-96

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Irving
    29PTS
    Kyrie Irving
    J. Allen
    18RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    T. Johnson
    7ASTS
    Tyler Johnson
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    ThursdayThu Jan 07 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 122-109

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    J. Harris
    28PTS
    Joe Harris
    J. Allen
    11RBS
    Jarrett Allen
    C. LeVert
    10ASTS
    Caris LeVert
    YES Network, TNT, TNT OTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    FridayFri Jan 08 FedExForum, Memphis, TN
    L 110-115

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    C. LeVert
    43PTS
    Caris LeVert
    J. Green
    9RBS
    Jeff Green
    J. Allen
    6ASTS
    Jarrett Allen
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    SundaySun Jan 10 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    L 116-129

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    36PTS
    Kevin Durant
    K. Durant
    11RBS
    Kevin Durant
    C. LeVert
    6ASTS
    Caris LeVert
    YES NetworkWCBS 880 AM
    Watch Game
  • home game
    TuesdayTue Jan 12 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 122-116

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    34PTS
    Kevin Durant
    K. Durant
    9RBS
    Kevin Durant
    K. Durant
    13ASTS
    Kevin Durant
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    WednesdayWed Jan 13 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
    W 116-109

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    26PTS
    Kevin Durant
    B. Brown
    14RBS
    Bruce Brown
    C. Chiozza
    7ASTS
    Chris Chiozza
    YES Network, ESPNWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    SaturdaySat Jan 16 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 122-115

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    K. Durant
    42PTS
    Kevin Durant
    J. Harden
    12RBS
    James Harden
    J. Harden
    14ASTS
    James Harden
    YES NetworkWCBS 880 AM
    Watch Game
  • home game
    MondayMon Jan 18 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    W 125-123

    TEAM LEADERS OF THE GAME

    J. Harden
    34PTS
    James Harden
    D. Jordan
    12RBS
    DeAndre Jordan
    J. Harden
    12ASTS
    James Harden
    TNTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    WednesdayWed Jan 20 Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland, OH
    7:00pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    FridayFri Jan 22 Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland, OH
    7:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    SaturdaySat Jan 23 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES Network, NBA TVWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    MondayMon Jan 25 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES Network, NBA TVWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    WednesdayWed Jan 27 State Farm Arena, Atlanta, GA
    7:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    FridayFri Jan 29 Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK
    8:00pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    SundaySun Jan 31 Capital One Arena, Washington, DC
    7:00pmET
    YES Network, NBA TVWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    TuesdayTue Feb 02 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    TNTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    FridayFri Feb 05 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES Network, ESPNWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    SaturdaySat Feb 06 Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
    7:00pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    TuesdayTue Feb 09 Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, MI
    7:00pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    WednesdayWed Feb 10 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    SaturdaySat Feb 13 Chase Center, San Francisco, CA
    8:30pmET
    ABCWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    MondayMon Feb 15 Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, CA
    10:00pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    TuesdayTue Feb 16 Phoenix Suns Arena, Phoenix, AZ
    10:00pmET
    YES Network, TNTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    ThursdayThu Feb 18 Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA
    10:00pmET
    TNTWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    SundaySun Feb 21 Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA
    8:00pmET
    YES Network, ESPNWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    TuesdayTue Feb 23 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    ThursdayThu Feb 25 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    7:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • home game
    SaturdaySat Feb 27 Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
    8:30pmET
    ABCWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    MondayMon Mar 01 AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
    8:30pmET
    YES NetworkWFAN
    Watch Game
  • away game
    WednesdayWed Mar 03 Toyota Center, Houston, TX
    7:30pmET
    YES Network, ESPNWFAN
    Watch Game

No Future Games Scheduled Using This Filter

NEXT UP:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter