After two tight losses, the Brooklyn Nets suffered a 115-96 loss to the New York Knicks Monday night.
In the opening minutes, the Nets continued the hot 3-point shooting that had elevated them to No. 2 in the NBA in 3-point shooting percentage, making four of their first six to build a nine-point lead. But their touch fizzled after that as they ended up shooting 11-for-38 from beyond the arc, breaking a run of five straight games shooting 40 percent or better.
Spencer Dinwiddie's 10 fourth-quarter points helped bring the Nets within 11 with five minutes to go, but the Knicks solidified the game with a 7-1 run to push the lead back to 17 with four minutes remaining.
Dinwiddie led the Nets with 17 points, while Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had a season-high 16 points plus seven rebounds in his fourth game back after missing all of the preseason and the first three regular season games.
The Nets jumped out to a 14-5 lead with four threes in the first three minutes, two each by D'Angelo Russell -- who scored Brooklyn's first eight points -- and Joe Harris. At that point, the Nets were 4-of-6 from deep. But they shot 1-of-16 from there into halftime as the Knicks worked their way back, tying the game at 26 at the end of the first quarter.
The Knicks pulled out to a 10-point lead, 52-42, after an 8-0 run late in the second quarter led by six straight points from Tim Hardaway Jr. A Dinwiddie layup cut the deficit to eight points at halftime.
Then the Knicks opened the second half on a 12-1 run capped by a Hardaway three that put the Knicks up by 19, 64-45. They stretched their lead as large as 25 points on a Damyean Dotson three-point play with 5:26 to go in the third, making it 75-50.
Rookie Rodions Kurucs was off to a promising start before spraining his ankle on Oct. 20 in Indiana. That was a carryover from some impressive preseason play as injuries opened an opportunity for the 6-9 forward.
In three games, Kurucs averaged 8.7 points and 4.0 rebounds in 14.3 minutes per game, shooting 4-of-10 from 3-point range.
“He worked out today, so made progress," said Atkinson. "Listen, in the short stint we had him he showed some sign that he’s an NBA player and he can help us. So hoping to get him back soon. But like I said I know he worked out today, that’s a good sign for us going forward.”
The Nets have a three-game homestand that begins with the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday, followed by the Houston Rockets on Friday and the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday.